domingo, 3 de diciembre de 2023

"We the People": The Spanish, American and UK Constitutions

Wednesday, December 6th is Constitution Day in Spain. In this entry you can find a short introduction to the Spanish Constitution (1978), the American Constitution, and the unwritten Constitution of the United Kingdom, a lesson plan for C1 level, and some extra articles to expand your knowledge for C2 students and Experts (beyond C2).  You can look up the most difficult words appearing in the body of this post at the very bottom of this entry, just above the video.


The Constitution of the United Kingdom is the oldest and most peculiar of the three. It is not written in a document, it is "an uncodified constitution", so it is based on a set of customs, usages and codes that establish parliamentary sovereignty, democracy and the rule of law (including the upholding of international law and human rights).  The British constitution is interpreted by the UK Supreme Court, and it applies to the United Kingdom, including Scotland, Wales and England after the Acts of Union (1707) and to Northern Ireland after the Acts of Union (1800), which were signed by the Kingdoms of Great Britain and Ireland. The UK Constitution dates back to the Magna Carta signed by King John of England (1215), which limited the absolute power of the monarch and granted some basic legal rights. The Magna Carta was later on augmented by the Bill of Rights (1689), which is a crucial statue in English constitutional law and sets out more civil rights like freedom of speech; the right of petition; the right to suffer no cruel or unusual punishments; legal immunity for members of Parliament (on actions of deeds made in the course of their legislative duties) etc.

In recent years there has been talk and some initiatives to reform the UK constitution. Devolution of power to the Scottish, Welsh and Northern Ireland assemblies, has been the most conspicuous. Here you can read the BBC article "Devolution: What is it and how does it work across the UK?", which is suitable for C1 students and it is included in the lesson plan.  At the bottom of this post you will find some of the key words in this article. 

The Institute for Government, a moderate centre-left think tank, and the Bennett Institute for Public Policy at the University of Cambridge have recently published some reports to review certain constitutional issues, like Parliament, devolution in England, electoral reform, the House of Lords, the Monarchy, the role of the political parties etc. The video "Review of the UK Constitution" (6:48) summarizes their goals and conclusions. The use technical legal vocabulary (jargon), and the density of complex constitutional concepts in the narration, raise the difficulty of the video and make it suitable for C2 students, even though there are subtitles. If you are extremely interested in the subject, you can check out the Institute for Government web page, and the short conclusions in the Review of the UK Constitution: Final Report, which is recommended for Experts, (above C2 level).  Brian Christopher Jones, on the other hand, offers arguments to keep the unwritten UK constitution as it is now in the article A single written UK Constitution may only make things worse.  This highbrow academic essay is suitable for experts in British law (Ex level).

The American Constitution (1789) establishes the separation of powers in three branches: the legistalive in the US Congress, which is composed of the House of Representatives and the Senate, the executive which includes the President, the Vice president and the cabinet at federal level (and the governors at state level), and the judicial, whose highest court if the U.S. Supreme Court. The original American constitution was amended to include civil rights in the U.S. Bill of Rights. At the bottom of the post, you can find a TED-Ed video (3:34) that explains the U.S. Bill of Rights, which is included in the lesson plan for C1 students, and a list of key words.

Some political movements call for reform of the American constitution one way or another.  For example, the progressive Brennan Centre for Justice calls for the expansion of voting rights, the revision gerrymandering, the limitation of big donations to finance political campaigns, or the ending mass incarceration, among others. But the reality of the judiciary branch of power is that the current US Supreme Court has the largest conservative majority in the past 90 years, as 6 out of its 9 members (or "justices") were appointed by presidents Bush and Trump -NPR reported in the article "The Supreme Court is the most conservative in 90 years"- so, in recent years, they have overturned historical court rulings like Roe v. Wade, that established the federal right to access abortion and, as a result, women in certain states no longer have the right to abortion, as CNN reported in "Abortion law state map: See where abortions are legal or banned".

The Spanish Constitution (1978) is the supreme law of the Kingdom of Spain. It is the culmination of the Spanish transition to democracy, and its approval in a referendum meant the legal end of the the Francoist dictatorship. According to Wikipedia, "article 1.1 states that Spain is a social and democratic state under the rule of law with the legal values of liberty, justice, equality and political pluralism. Article 1.2  refers to national sovereignty, which is vested in the Spanish people, article 1.3 establishes parliamentary monarchy as the political form of the Spanish state". All in all, there are 169 articles and a number of additional and transitory provisions in the Spanish Constitution.

Some of the key words in the body of this post are: codes, sovereignty, to uphold, to date back to, to grant [legal rights], to augment, a statute, to set out, a petition, deeds, devolution, conspicuous, a think tank, jargon, highbrow, [the three] branches [of power], the cabinet, to be amended, civil rights, gerrymandering, incarceration, to overturn, a court ruling, a dictatorship, to state, to be vested, a provision.

Some of the key words in the BBC article "Devolution: What is it and how does it work across the UK?", are: to be run, an elected body, policy, tax, to raise/ lower [income tax], forestry, courts, stamp duty, welfare, to argue for, highways, landfill [tax], power-sharing, mandatory, to be dissolved, [relations] break down, a mayor, to set [priorities], [bus] fares, the Tube, a target, affordable.

Some key words in the TED-Ed video, "U.S. Bill of Rights" below include: assembly, to bear [arms], an amendment, search, seizure, privacy, a trial, a jury.

martes, 28 de noviembre de 2023

Bilan Media: the All Female News Team in Somalia

Bilan Media is an all female news team which is breaking new ground in the global media world from, oddly enough, a deeply troubled country like Somalia.  Six women who have managed to put together a top quality news website, with the support of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

The British newspaper The Guardian has recently published a story based on a Bilan Media report: "The river took it all": Somalis wait for waters to recede as floods kill dozens. This reading is long and rich in lexis, but with the help of context it can be accessible to B2+/ C1 students and above, who will find useful, new words like: to recede, to reel from, drought, to cherish, floods, to flee, heavy [rains], pastures, to perish, famine, in pitch darkness, to dig, a grave, a dilapidated [house], displaced people, to cram, to be swept away, flash [floods], to pack, concrete, mud, [waters] to subside, [prices] to soar, to prompt, aid [groups], in dire [need], a well, sewage, an outbreak [of cholera], [to find yourself] stranded, an autorickshaw. his livelihood, rubbish, a cart, on the outskirts [of the city], a waterborne [disease], a forecast, a riverbed, [a river] to burst its banks, to airlift [food], to cut off [a place], an airstrip, [it is] unclear, fertile, to join ranks [with], to shelter, maize, sesame.

In the recent past, these female journalists have managed to tell stories which have broken taboos in a patriarchal society, as they openly talked about "a female drug epidemic, women living with HIV and period shame", according to the Reuters's short video with script (1:41) Somalia's first all women's newsroom spotlights female taboos, which is suitable for B2 students. BBC News had earlier published a short report Somalia all-female media unit breaking stereotypes, and a very interesting video (6:06) with English subtitles for the interviews in the local language (C1 level) about the new life of camerawoman Maryana: Somalia, sexism and me: Being a camerawoman in Mogadishu. 

The Guardian again, celebrated the first anniversary of the birth of Bilan Media, with the article It's dangerous being a female journalist in Somalia. But one year on, we are still shining our light.

If you want to listen to all these female journalists speaking in their local language about their challenges and dreams, you can watch the video with English subtitles below: Bilan Media: Somalia's first all women media team.

I would like to congratulate my former student Cristina R., who works for Aragón TV, for her report last month, where I first learnt about the existence of Bilan Media.

miércoles, 22 de noviembre de 2023


Today, Thursday 23 November, 2023, I would like to thank an American family, the Dolbeys, who welcomed me as a foreign AFS exchange student over 40 years ago and taught me English around a dining table. 

Thank you, Boyd, Lynn (R.I.P.), Charlie, Cathy and Christie, in times of joy and in times of sorrow.


Thanksgiving is a national holiday in the United States, Canada, some Caribbean islands and even in Liberia. Wikipedia explains the history and traditions of this peculiar holiday all around the world, in an article which is rather long and complex, so it is recommended for C1 students if you want to read it all . Some of the interesting words you can find in this article are: blessing, harvest, failure, settlers, to flee, God Almighty, to be prompted, relief, siege, to beseech, sham, to observe a festivity, to dub, a feast, staple, non-denominational, crop, barley, oats.

The Farmers' Almanac offers a more light-hearted, hands-on approach to celebrating Thanksgiving: recipes, helpful hints, traditions, trivia & nostalgia.  Each separate section could be accessible to B2 students. Some interesting words here are: to observe a festivity, to scour, a hint, to dig, to browse, mouth watering, cranberry, squash, stuffing, pumpkin, leftovers, heartburn, moist, fluffy, mashed [potatoes], yummy, stew, a riddled, jellied.

There are several videos on YouTube which give you complementary views of Thanksgiving. An easy video to introduce foreign students to the basics is Thanksgiving History & Traditions. ESL/ESOL/EFL A1- A2, (3:47) which, despite its title, is more suitable for B1 learners (you can read the subtitles). Some interesting words you will find are: an occasion, pilgrim, voyage, to land, crops, to grow [corn], harvest, roast, turkey, cranberry sauce, pumpkin pie, parade.

A more detailed account of the story of Thanksgiving can be found in The Real Story of Thanksgiving, (11:42), where you can thoroughly learn about the sailing difficulties of the Mayflower, how the Pilgrims built the first settlement and the story of the individual Indians and tribes that hepled the settlers: Sumoset an Abenaki Indian; Squanto, a Patuxet Indian who was kidnapped and taken to Spain and England where he became fluent in English and the Wampanoag tribe who formed a military alliance with the Europeans against other Indian enemy tribe, namely, the Narragansetts. This video with subtitles is fast and dense, and it contains a lot of technical and colloquial expressions, so it is recommended for C2 students and above. Some interesting vocabulary: kumbaya, pier, bound for, a spit, speedwell, ungainly, to make it [to America], dissenters, haunt, to have more say, a printing press, a bad rap, flattering, creaky [boat], undaunted, glee, to be refitted, to botch, to cram, a snap, a beam, a spare, buckling, delays, a screw, to be kicked out, to cite land, to set up anchor, dodgy, to be set down, scurvy, icy, to send out, to be aboard, to drape, arrows, muskets, pilgrims, to search the area, claws, riddled, timber, to be wiped out, picky, to huddle together], to thaw, the crew, a storehouse, the locals, promptly, supplies, to swap, the chief, to be beset, a cannon, unlikely, tutelage, to thrive, bounty, game birds, waterfowl, deer, eel, crab, harvest, to set aside their differences.

A more critical view of the encounter of the two civilizations can be seen in the First Thanksgiving video (6:09) which takes pride to show the "true events" behind the fairy tale that is taught at primary schools: the complex political and religious background to the Mayflower Pilgrims's exile into the New World and the troubled relationships between the native Americans and the Pilgrims. This video is fast and quite complex in content so, it can be suitable for C2 students. Some interesting expressions are: dawn, deceitful, settlement, in droves, to be wiped out, the fate, pilgrims, to flee (fled), the congregation, to pay off the debt, to be spotted, a grave, a storage pit, furs, a hostage, to keep an eye on, bountiful, to entertain, settlers, to fast, to be up to something, to overthrow, swift, sachem, a conspiracy, preemptive, to outnumber, godless, the outcome, to surrender, short-lived, zealous beliefs, to wipe away, the fairy tale.

If you want to find out about how Thanksgiving is celebrated in other countries around the world, like Canada, China, Korea, the Caribbean, Liberia, Germany or Japan, you can watch Thanksgiving around the world (7:01). The script in this video with subtitles is more simple, colloquial and the delivery is less fast, so, perhaps it can be OK for B2 students and above. Some interesting expressions are: a feast, to compile, to get together, mashed potatoes, to chow down, casserole, cranberry, crew, treacherous, pastry, a filling, goddess, the eve, quality time, a bonding activity, odd, tiny, to be overthrown, a coup, a whaling ship, a whaler, a feast, a harvest  festival, the bounty of crops.

A final option is to watch the video The History of the Holidays: the History of Thanksgiving (3:25). This is a summary of the history of the festivity and the modern celebrations, a short version of the texts and videos above. The language is not too hard, so it can be accessible to B2 students.  You can also find the video at the bottom of this entry too. Some interesting vocabulary that you will find here: iconic, a feast, their bounty, staple, codfish, lobster, fasting, prayer, bountiful harvests, drought, to decree, to set about establishing, to urge politicians, leisure, to boost attendance, fledging, a kickoff, to brave the cold, a collective breath, to reconnect with loved ones. 
In 2023, Thanksgiving will be celebrated on Thursday 23rd November in the USA.

domingo, 19 de noviembre de 2023

Latin Grammy Awards 2023

The Latin Grammy Awards Ceremony travelled to Seville (Spain), outside the USA for the first time in its 25-year history, NPR reported last Wednesday "in a 19-million move to expand the global reach of the event and to promote music programming in the region of Andalusia". 

El País highlights the "winners" of the night: Mexican Natalia Lafourcade's for singer-song writer, Shakira's three grammys for urban/fusion performance, best pop song and for song of the year, and fellow Colombian Karol G. for album of the year, best urban music album and best urban/ fusion performance. Finally, El País points out that Rosalía was "the artist who shone the most on stage", 

Next, you can find a link to each of the winning songs and videos in the main categories to illustrate the 2023 crop of Latin music: Karol G - Mañana será bonito

Natalia Lafourcade - De todas las flores; Julieta Benegas -Tu HistoriaShakira & Bzrp - Music Session, Vol 53Joaquina - Quise QuererteNiña Pastori - Bon Día (Camino); Andrés Cepedo - Décimo CuartoKarol G fet. Shakira - TqgTego Calderon La Receta; Eladio Carrión y Bad Bunny, Coco ChanelQuevedo: Bzrp Music Sessions, Vol. 52;  Molotov - Sólo D' LiraJ Diamante Eléctrico y Adrián Quesada Leche de TigreJuanes - Vida Cotidiana; Lasso - Ojos Marrones; Monsieur Periné - Prométeme (Bolero Apocalíptico); Dante Spinetta - El Lado Oscuro del CorazónGrupo Niche y Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional de Colombia - Niche Sinfónico; Carlos Vives Escalona La Historia (Nunca se Había Grabado Así); Romeo Santos - Fórmula, Vol. 3 y Sergio Vargas - A Mi Manera; Omara Portuondo - Bolero a la Vida; Luis Fernando Borjas - Qué me Hiciste (5: 10 am); Fonseca y Juan Luís Guerra - Si Tú Me Quisiste; Christian Nodal - Forrajido EP2; Julión Álvarez y su Norteño Banda- De Hoy En Adelante, que te Vaya Bien; Juan Treviño - Para Empezar a Amar; Carin León - Colmillo de Leche; Grupo Frontera feat. Bad Bunny - un X100to; Camilo Valencia & Richard Bravo - Made in Miami; Vicente García - Camino al Sol; Quinteto Astor Piazzolla - Operation Tango; Chucho Valdés & Paquito D'Rivera - I Missed You Too!; Marcos Vidal - Lo que Vemos; Eli Soares - Nós; Xênia FranÇa, Em Nome da Estrela; Planet Hemp - Jardineiros; Planet Hemp feat. Criolo - Distopia; Martinho Da Vila - Negra Ópera; Joao Donato - Serotonina; Marília Mendoça - Decretos Reais; Gaby Amarantos - TecnoShow;  Tiago Iore - Tudo O Que A Fé Pode Tocar; Danilo & Chapis - Vamos al Zoo; Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra - Huáscar Barradas Four Elements Immersive Sympohony for Orchestra and Chorus; Pacho Flores feat. Paquito D'Rivera - Concerto Venezolano; Edgar Barrera; Nathy Peluso, Félix Bollaín & Rogelio González - Estás Buenísimo; Camilo & Camilo Ríos - Camilo: El Primer Tour de mi Vida (trailer).

If you are interested in fashion, Variety magazine shows the Best Pictures of the Latin Awards 2023

The NPR story can be read by C1 students and above who will come across interesting vocabulary like: so what?, to head to, to lead up to [the events], to take over, a deal, a telecast, cliche, a boundary, to host [acoustic sessions], to stress [that], to echo, to stoke [controversy], on the heels of, to raise eyebrows, to dabble in [tropical genres], a backlash, [a debate] to unfold, to hint  [at questions], to uplift, whitewashed, satinized, scrutinize, barely, the [Florida] branch, the rate, ongoing, contention, stark [criticism], to snub, a breakthrough, allegations, to harass, [highly] pubicized, diaspora, a [colonial] tag, the birthplace, to carry [political] implications, race, tricky, to mirror, in flux, to set out [to solve], to fulfill [a mission], mainstream [music], [profound] underrepresentation, to be looked down [upon], unabashedly, groundbreaking, a queer [woman], to be dubbed, to play a pivotal role, glaringly [absent], vast [diversity], to undervalue, a boundary-pushing [player], to champion.

The El País report, can be read by B2 learners and above, who will find interesting words and expressions like: to sneak  [into the urban genre], to thrill, to crash [the party], a singer-songwriter, [to feel] broken, the overwhelming [precence], a gala, to shine [the most], poise, stature, a bird's eye view, to come out [first], a top-selling [singer], to be eligible [for an award], to stage, to be gripped, sorrow, resounding [modernity], guts, a dagger, clappers, props, [to give them] a twist, unleashed, to stand out, stingy, [latest] harvest, to border [the absurdity], to get [their interpretations] off the ground, the broadcast, to fit in, to hold your own, a kid, [to have a lot of] nerve, morale, a tenet, deceased, solitude, refreshing naivety, to set foot on [a stage], touching.

For the Spanish/ English bilinguals following this blog, below you can find a direct link to Nathy Peluso's, official video of  "Estás Buenísimo" in Spanish, winner of the Best Short Form Music Video, by Félix Bollaín & Rogelio González: 

domingo, 12 de noviembre de 2023

Dolly Parton, the Unlikely Bipartisan American Icon

Dolly Parton is much more than a successful country and pop singer in the USA: she is a composer, a TV host, an actress, a business woman, a philanthropist and, problably, one of the few cultural leaders who has drawn loyal admiration by both Republicans and Democrats when the country became deeply polarized, a rare virtue in times of culture wars bitterly fought by pugnacious politicians.

She was born into a "dirt poor" family in a remote Appalachian valley, and she grew up with profound Pentecostal roots.  Her first public performance took place at the age of six in her local church, and now she is a committed Christian, artist and philanthropist who has helped a number of charitable causes including children's literacy, wildfire victims, cancer, HIV-AIDS and COVID-19 research (her contributions helped to develop the Moderna vaccine), but she has also denounced women's discrimination in the workplace or supported transgender women in her songs and films. Musically, she acknowledges the influence of her aunt Dorothy Jo, an evangelist, and the English, Welsh and Irish folk tradition through her mother, Avie Lee Caroline. Here you can find three lesson plans created by my former colleague Carmen B. based on three of her hits: Country Road with its lesson plan, Family  with its lesson plan and I'll Always Love You (Whitney Houston's version) and its lesson plan. The level of the tasks is B2/ B1+ and you will find words like: fit, to spin, neon lights, to choke, a fast lane, ole, calico, a dead end, preacher, gay, stray, ain't, sinners, [to be] in your way, a step, darling, bittersweet,  Other major Dolly Parton's hits include Jolene, Coat of Many Colors and Working 9 to 5. Dolly Parton is a self-made woman and the epitone of the American Dream, her net worth was estimated at $5 million in 2017, including her own theme park, Dollywood, in Pigeon Forge, Tennesse.

If you want further info, you can listen to the 2019 NPR podcast Dolly Parton's America which is a thorough account of her long career and how her songs have appealed to the most diverse audiences, from cowboys, hillbillies (derogatory for an Appalachian country person) and traditional families to lesbians, feminists or people dressed in drags for over 50 years (this 9 hour radio podcast without a script and full of American cultural references is recommended for "Experts", beyond C2 level). You can also watch a clip of her 1977 interview by Barbara Walters (4:02) where she talks about her hillbilly background and the outrageous image she has created for herself to succeed in show biz (C1 level), or you can watch the two full Barbara Walters' interviews (1977 and 1982) with commercials (C2 level), or you can read the recently published book Dolly Parton. Un retrato americano written by Spanish journalist Beatriz Navarro (Sabiñánigo, 1977). 

You can click below to watch the two full Barbara Walters' interviews (1977 and 1982) on YouTube:

viernes, 3 de noviembre de 2023

"Ain't Got No", "I Got Life" by Lisa Simone

Lisa Simone offers this stunning cover of Nina Simone's (Lisa's mother) medley of two songs from the musical film "Hair", "Ain't Got No" and "I Got Life", on the RTL's programme, "L'Heure du Jazz" (2014), after the release of her album All is Well.  Lisa's rendition of the songs on the French TV show is just amazing! The photo on the left comes from Lisa's performance at Stockholm's Jazz Festival in 2009.

"Hair" is a musical, anti-war comedy-drama, which tells the love and friendship story of a "tribe"of young hippie rebels who are doing sex, drugs and rock'n roll while they are trying to avoid the Vietnam war draft. It was directed by Milos Forman in 1979.

Here you can find a fill-in-the gap task, which has been designed for A2 students, so, B1 students will carry it out with ease, and here you can find the lesson-plan. The songs contain basic vocabulary for B1 students to revise the parts of the body etc, like: sweater, token, God, faith, anyway, brains, toes, liver, blood, headaches, toothaches, arms, chin, boobies, soul, freedom.

domingo, 22 de octubre de 2023

The Princess of Asturias Awards & Leonor's Pledge of Allegiance to the Constitution

In an emotional evening, the winners of the 43rd edition of the Princess of Asturias Awards received the warm applause of the audience and the recognition of the Spanish Royal Family last Friday, while Princess Leonor read a mature speech about sacrifice and service, that made her parents gaze at her with profound pride. Then a band of pipers and drummers played the anthem of the principality of Asturias to contribute to the solemn and joyous atmosphere for the ceremony. Meryl Streep received the award for Arts, Nuccio Ordine for Communication and Humanities, Hélene Carrière D'Encausse for Social Sciences, Eliud Kipchoge for Sports, Drugs for Neglected Diseases Initiative (DNDi) for International Cooperation, Jeffrey Gordon, E. Peter Greenberg and Bonnie L. Bassler for Scientific and Technical Research, Mary's Meals for Concord and Haruki Murakami for Literature. 

The award ceremony was the prelude of a historical week for Princess Leonor, who has taken a week off her military training at the Military Academy of Zaragoza to pledge alliance to the Spanish Constitution and become the official heir to the throne, according to the Daily Mail, which also published the new photos released for her 18th birthday. These two articles are suitable for C1 students, you can find the key words under the following paragraph. 

The texts and videos about the Award Ceremony come from the Princess of Asturias Foundation and they are suitable for B2 students and above.  You can find interesting vocabulary for example, in Meryl Streep's multimedia contents: holder, to star [in a Broadway production], to stand out, a leading role, to gain [recognition], [her best] performance, to earn [her an Oscar], committed to [defending women's rights]. In Nuccio Ordine's: to earn [a PhD], outstanding, numerous [articles], well-being. In Hélene Carrière D'Encausse's: to head [a Department]. In Eliud Kipchoge's: to stand atop [the highests podium], so-called, ups and downs, [to be] nicknamed, prowess, [ability] to focus, to cut [thirty seconds] off [the previous record], to go through [the arches], to smash [the world record], [300 metres] to go, a lap [of the track], endurance runs, tempo runs, to come down to [this], [history] unfolding, a marathon event, a [considerable] chunk, a history maker, [simply] stunning, scrambling [for superlatives]. Haruki Murakami: a graduate [in Literature], to converge, an unnerving [writer], the dreamlike [world], to be rooted, a budding [writer], to garner [success], a writing fellow [at Princeton University], an earthquake, [universal] scope. DNDi: a non-profit organization, underdevelopment, research, headquarters, to be chaired, funding, [public and private] entities, ailments, affordable [access], to plague [our world], neglected, toxic, scars, powerless, to launch [an initiative], to harness [the science], to develop [drugs], a conductor, a hit, to run clinical trials, to deliver [a treatment], to shape [the next years]. Jeffrey Gordon, E. Peter Greenberg and Bonnie L. Bassler: to spearhead, the microbiome, epithelial [cells], polysaccharides, thereby, to make up [the microbiota], a [new] approach, distinguished, gut, undernourished [children], to play a key role, to address [a problem], an acknowledgment, thrilling. Mary's Meals: to aim [to provide], relief, to achieve a goal, to carry out [its work], to devise, to the utmost, [local] produce, likewise, to ensure, fundraising, affiliates, to beat [in harmony], remarkable, to dwell, to struggle, a ladder, [all] walks of life.

The Daily Mail report on the oath of allegiance to the Constitution, you can find complex words like: to hail, to swear loyalty to the constitution, to be flanked, the heir [to the throne], [to look] regal, to be gripped, to step [on to the stage], [to look] composed, allegiance, queen regent, to engulf, to be betrayed, a [slighthint [of nerves], a touching [moment], to glance, reassurance, to be honed, a stint, a boarding school, to mark [the anniversary], an unwavering delivery, to state, a commitment, to step up [her role], Queen-in-training, poignant, [hair] pulled back, a sleek ponytail, understated [make up], a fleeting [gesture].

In the Daily Mail photo report, you will find these words: a snap, a casual [display], a chic [display], a V-neck [t-shirt], to gaze [away], minimal [make up], to reveal, the coming of age, the queen-in-waiting, [to take an] oath, [to preserve] the Magna Carta, the successor, to wave [a flag], appreciation, to be bustling [with revellers], to be chaired, cavalry, squadron, to be deployed, to be up to par, an impressive [speech], to watch on, to entail, to praise, incredible, to achieve, the principality [of Asturias], outstanding, a low-key [birthday], fanfare, the Royal Mint, to mark [the birthday], the effigy, to be engraved, to undergo [military training], to be dubbed, a strict [timetable], [to be on] manoeuvres, to head to. 

Further reading: If you are interested in the microbiome and inmune system research, you can check these past entries in the blog: How the Inmune System Works and Super Poo Donors Wanted.