Find Out How Queen Elizabeth Carried On a 90-Year Tradition with a Secret Message

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Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex and Queen Elizabeth II officially launch the Birmingham 2022 Queen's Baton Relay for the XXII Commonwealth Games at Buckingham Palace on October 07, 2021 in London, England
Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex and Queen Elizabeth II officially launch the Birmingham 2022 Queen's Baton Relay for the XXII Commonwealth Games at Buckingham Palace on October 07, 2021 in London, England

Karwai Tang/WireImage Prince Edward and Queen Elizabeth

Queen Elizabeth teamed up with her youngest child, Prince Edward, for the start of a 90,000-mile journey.

On Thursday, the monarch — sporting autumnal orange — and her son appeared outside Buckingham Palace to officially launch the Queen's Baton Relay ahead of the the XXII Commonwealth Games in Birmingham next summer. The Queen, 95, passed the baton to Paralympian Kadeena Cox, who became the first baton bearer of the 294-day relay that will take the baton on a 90,000-mile journey to all 72 nations and territories of the Commonwealth before arriving in Birmingham.

The baton also carries a secret message from the Queen. In an ASMR-friendly video shared on the royal family's official social media pages, the finishing touch was her familiar signature at the bottom of the letter, which will be read at the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games in July.

Queen Elizabeth serves as patron of the Commonwealth Games Federation, while Prince Edward has the role of vice-patron.

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The Commonwealth Games began in 1930 as the British Empire Games and has been held every four years (with the exception of 1942 and 1946) since. In 2022, 4,500 athletes from 72 and territories participate in the multi sport event.

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The baton relay was introduced at the 1958 British Empire and Commonwealth Games in Cardiff, Wales. Since then, the relay has extended greatly — at first, the journey was only went through England and the host nation.

Following her stay at her beloved Balmoral Castle in Scotland during the summer and early fall, Queen Elizabeth recently returned to Windsor Castle. On Wednesday, she stepped back into her role as Captain General of the troops (a post she first received upon her Coronation in 1953).

Wearing her glittering Maple Leaf Brooch as she met some of the Canadian soldiers in the Guardroom at Windsor Castle, where the troops from 1st Regiment, Royal Canadian Horse Artillery are on guard at the moment, the Queen marked the first time the regiment had undertaken the duties.

After speaking to the soldiers, she presented the Captain General's Sword to representatives of the Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery on the Parade Ground. The sword has been created to annually recognize "Exemplary Leadership in the Rank of Captain" by an officer selected from each of the Royal Regiment's Regular and Reserve Force components.

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