|We Are Not Amused - In honour of the two British queens who have ruled Great Britain and the Empire in the last two hundred years we offer these rare memorabilia items that were sold recently at auction.
Right the bloomers that Queen Victoria was possibly wearing while sitting in her coach above went for $15,000 US in 2011. Another pair left sold in 1991.
The ones on the right are conveniently crotchless, an idea Victoria possibly copied from the African part of her empire.
There, even in modern times, women do not wear underpants. This offers a number of conveniences. Since women are always carrying, either wood or pots on their heads, and, or almost always, babies in their arms, removing underwear is an awful imposition for someone whose hands are always preoccupied. Without underpants women can just stop in their travels along the road, without having to put down either the load on their heads or in their arms, squat down, do their business without missing down time, stand up and resume their travels.
Clearly Queen Victoria had the best of both worlds, able to wear underpants but not having to remove them while doing her ablutions or whatever else queens do in their private down time.
Below are the bloomers of a young Queen Elizabeth that an errant servant left in a private plane Liz used in Chile in 1968, and were speedily acquired by a high society "noble," Baron Dobronyi, who had them in his private collection for some 50 years till he died and they were put up for auction.
Clearly Queen Elizabeth had more time on her hands than Queen Victoria. She had to undo numerous buttons in order to remove them during her down time.
After a careful examination of the button holes by our curator, he concluded that there is no sign of tearing or other damage by having been opened in haste either by Liz herself during a personal emergency, say after a bad state dinner in India, or by an ardent suitor, whether they be Duke, butler, or stable boy...
The auction house advertised them as "used and stained" without specifically naming the agent.
Liz's underpants went to a very wealthy private bidder for some $18,000 US. Though the reason for acquiring them was also not disclosed.
Disclaimer - In the interest of good taste, the Canadian Anglo-Boer War Museum does not deal in or acquire questionable items of this sort, leaving the field entirely to the rich and super-rich to indulge in their private collecting fetishes.
A queer fetishist of the rich and super-rich: Baron Dobronyi.
It is not known if the Baron ever encountered the Queen at a state dinner and was able to ask her, "By the way, your Royal Highness, do you know what I have?"