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2012 0604 xjubilee 30

The Herald-Dispatch

People lining the river bank wave British Union flags as Britain's Queen Elizabeth II and other members of the British royal, embark on the royal barge, the principal vessel at the head of a flotilla of 1,000 vessels on the River Thames, during a river pageant to celebrate the queen's Diamond Jubilee in London, Sunday, June 3, 2012. An armada of vessels, from historic sailboats and barges to kayaks, lifeboats and military launches, took part in Sunday's river pageant to mark the queen's 60 years on the throne. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham-Pool)

Gallery: Queen Elizabeth's Jubilee

Jun. 03, 2012 @ 04:48 PM

LONDON — The River Thames became a royal highway Sunday, as Queen Elizabeth II led a motley but majestic flotilla of more than 1,000 vessels in a waterborne pageant to mark her Diamond Jubilee.

In a colorful salute to the island nation's maritime past, an armada of skiffs and sailboats, rowboats and paddle steamers joined a flower-festooned royal barge down a 7-mile (11-kilometer) stretch of London's river.

With a crowd of rain-soaked spectators estimated by organizers at 1.25 million cheering from the riverbanks, the pageant was the largest public event in four days of celebrations of the monarch's 60 years on the throne.

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