What do you get for the monarch who has everything?
The answer, reports BBC News, was released by Buckingham Palace this week in the form of a list of gifts that the Queen has received during her Diamond Jubilee.
Included were the “honorary” ownership of a llama and the “adoption” of a baby Asian elephant.
Clarence House and St. James’s Palace also released lists of presents made to other members of the royal family, including Prince Charles, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry.
Charles, for instance, received an environmentally friendly fireplace on his visit to Denmark last year, while Harry got a personalized license plate in Brazil.
In Malaysia, Catherine was given six pairs of shoes, two handbags and a traditional dress.
The Queen received many official gifts, such as a set of jewelry from the Amir of Kuwait, who also gave Prince Philip a large golden sword.
But the Palace also offered details of the many unofficial gifts, which BBC News said included “436 books, 235 CDs and DVDs and 81 pieces of embroidery or knitting, including a tea cosy depicting the monarch and her beloved Corgi dogs.”
The Queen was also the recipient of 78 unsolicited portraits.
As for the “honorary” gifts of animals, they were unofficial but still in the time-honored tradition of live gifts to Her Majesty, as outlined on the official gifts page of the Queen’s website. In the past, the Queen has been given horses, which she rode at Trooping the Colour ceremonies, from Canada. She’s also received jaguars from Brazil, giant turtles from the Seychelles and an elephant from the Cameroon – all of which were given to the London Zoo.
Socialite Life’s Duchess Diary has a list of the “10 Coolest Gifts Queen Elizabeth Received for her Diamond Jubilee Year.”
• The Queen may have received dozens of unsolicited portraits as gifts, but BBC News reports, one that has not seen the light of day for 60 years has just gone on public display.
In 1952, artist John Napper painted a picture of the Queen, with an obviously elongated neck. Even the artist conceded that it didn’t look like the Queen – “a beautiful painting of a queen, but not this Queen,” Napper once said of it. He painted the long neck because the original intention was to hang the picture high on a wall in Liverpool’s St. George’s Hall, where it would have appeared normally proportioned.
Instead, the painting has been in storage for 60 years but, as of today, has been put up in the hall for which it was originally intended, as a celebration of the anniversary of the Queen’s Coronation.
The display of the Queen’s portrait comes a week after the unveiling of the first official portrait of the Duchess of Cambridge at the National Portrait Gallery.
• In this week’s Duchess Diary, our friend Kelly Lynch looks at the announcement of the Duchess of Cambridge’s due date and also how royal watchers refer to the Duchess: