The Queen just made a special social media move with a very rare personal touch

The Queen has only done this a handful of times

The Queen at the Out-Sourcing Inc. Royal Windsor Cup polo match and a carriage driving display by the British Driving Society at Guards Polo Club, Smith's Lawn on July 11, 2021 in Egham, England.
(Image credit: Photo by Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images)

The Queen took to The Royal Family Instagram account this week to make a special gesture with a personal touch that we don't see very often.

As the 2020 Paralympic games drew to a close this week, the Queen gave special thanks to the GB athletes who took part, sharing a personal message online. 

"I offer my warm congratulations to Paralympic athletes from Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and indeed to the athletes of all Commonwealth countries, on their enormous success at the Tokyo Games," the touching message read. 

"The commitment, dedication and adaptability shown by you, and your support teams, during the exceptional circumstances of the last 18 months has been inspirational. Your performances have lifted the nation and your triumphs been celebrated by us all.

"I send my very best wishes to all those who have contributed to the success of these memorable Games," the caption went on to say, before the monarch ended the Instagram post with, "ELIZABETH R".

While the Queen usually signs off official communications and royal statements with "Elizabeth R", it seems that it's rarely something that is incorporated into her social media presence and appears to be something she reserves for the most special of posts, in order to give them a personal feel. 

It's also no secret that the Queen doesn't personally curate her social media feeds and that she will have a team to pen her Instagram captions for her much of the time—however the use of Elizabeth R means this message will certainly have come directly from Her Majesty. 

Why does the Queen use Elizabeth R?

Back in 2014, the Queen used "Elizabeth R" in her first ever Twitter post and later used it on Instagram for a post in 2019, when she shared details of having the pleasure of seeing a handwritten letter penned by her great-great-grandfather Prince Albert, during a visit to London's Science Museum. 

Despite common belief, the 'R' does not stand for royal and in fact stands for Regina. 

The royal sign-manual is made up of the King or Queen's first name followed by Rex or Regina, which is the Latin for king and queen. 

When Prince Charles takes the throne after his mother, the Queen, his royal signature will become Charles R, with the 'R' standing for Rex. 

Caitlin Elliott
News Editor

Caitlin is News Editor for woman&home, covering all things royal, celeb, fashion, beauty and lifestyle. Caitlin started on local papers and titles such as Cosmopolitan, Now, Reveal and Take a Break while studying for her Multimedia Journalism degree. She also worked in Fashion PR as a Press Assistant for Arcadia's Topshop before becoming a part of the Now team. Caitlin went on to add the likes of Woman, GoodtoKnow, WhatToWatch and woman&home to her writing repertoire before moving on to her current role.