Buckingham Palace Will Show Off Queen Elizabeth II’s Collection of Gifts to Visitors This Summer

Apr 15, 2017

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You may never get the chance to walk in Queen Elizabeth II’s shoes — or to walk any one of her many Corgis — but you can get an up-close look at her Tongan baskets. In the (record) 65 years that Her Majesty has sat on England’s throne, she has amassed an impressive — and eclectic — collection of gifts from fellow world leaders like Nelson Mandela and Dwight Eisenhower. This summer, visitors to London will get a chance to see just what you could possibly give to the woman who has everything.

From July 22 through October 1, royal watchers and aspiring monarchs can pop into the State Rooms at Buckingham Palace to get an up-close look at more than 250 pieces in the Queen’s vast library of gifts, which hail from more than 100 countries and territories. According to the Royal Collection Trust, “The exhibition will explore Her Majesty’s role as Head of State, Head of the Commonwealth and Head of Nation, and includes gifts given during State Visits, overseas tours and official engagements and those presented to mark significant moments in The Queen’s life.”

From a bag of salt that was sent to the Queen for her 90th birthday from the people of Salt Island (part of the British Virgin Islands) to an intricately beaded throne, which was crafted by Nigeria’s Yoruba people and presented to Her Majesty in 1956, the exhibition features pieces that are both unexpected and tell story of the gifting people’s history and culture. You can check out photos of some of the items on display below — just promise us you won’t break anything…

Mind the gap! In 2010, the team at the Aldgate East Tube Station presented the Queen with her very own London Underground sign.

 Image  by Stuart C. Wilson/Getty Images.
Image courtesy of Stuart C. Wilson via Getty Images.

This hand-beaten silver bowl — complete with silver fruit — was presented to the Queen by President Kenneth Kaunda of Zambia in 1991.

Image courtesy of Yui Mok/PA Images via Getty Images.
Image courtesy of Yui Mok/PA Images via Getty Images.

The Queen received this ‘Vessel of Friendship’ from China in 2015.

Image courtesy of Stuart C. Wilson/Getty Images.
Image courtesy of Stuart C. Wilson via Getty Images.

These baskets were woven from coconut leaves from Tonga and presented to Queen Elizabeth II.

Image courtesy of Stuart C. Wilson/Getty Images.
Image courtesy of Stuart C. Wilson via Getty Images.

This beaded Yoruba throne was presented to Queen Elizabeth II by the people of Nigeria in 1956.

Image by Yui Mok/PA Images via Getty Images.
Image by Yui Mok/PA Images via Getty Images.

Will you be planning a visit to see the royal collection? 

H/T: The Guardian

Featured image courtesy of WPA Pool via Getty Images.

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