anecdotes about Queen Elizabeth of Great Britain
By Sarah Mills
LONDON (Reuters) – Since ascending to the throne 70 years ago, Britain’s Queen Elizabeth has become one of the world’s most famous personalities.
With much of his life documented, Reuters spoke to several royal experts to ask what little-known facts or anecdotes they know about the 96-year-old monarch.
Below are their quotes edited for length and clarity.
* The Queen has a “delightful sense of humour”
“We all saw a different side with the Queen… when she accepted this parody of James Bond… for the opening of the London Olympics,” said royal biographer Penny Junor.
In a tongue-in-cheek short film shown in a packed Olympic Stadium and in front of a massive global TV audience, the Queen met Bond and boarded a helicopter with him. Stunt doubles for the pair then dove into the stadium, before the real queen took her place.
“What the Queen has is a very professional front which she has shown to the world in her professional role and a very playful and delightful sense of humor which she has in private and which her family sees.”
* The queen is a “great mimic”
“I know she’s a great impersonator. She has privately entertained members of her family with impersonations of various world leaders, and apparently she is a very good impersonator and could have made a reasonable career out of it,” said Charles Rae, former royal correspondent for The Sun newspaper.
* Her shoes are broken for her
“The Queen has to be up quite often…so it’s extremely important that she’s comfortable and I think she has her shoes, which are kind of patent and low-heeled, broken for her by a member of the before she wears them,” said Lydia Slater, editor of Harper’s Bazaar magazine.
“So this member of staff, obviously with the same size of feet, has to wear them on a carpet for several days before the queen puts them on just to make sure they don’t rub and give her pain. blisters, which obviously could be disastrous if she is upright.
*She walked the Ascot course
“Almost everyone knows that The Queen is very fond of running, but I think people might not recognize that she practically ran herself,” said ‘The Queen’ author and historian Matthew Dennison.
“It was a tradition of the Royal Family in the early years of the Queen’s reign, that during Ascot week the Royal Family themselves would run before the race…the Queen and members of her family have indeed rode extremely fast on the course…
“I think somewhere there there’s a kind of emotion because moving incredibly quickly on horseback among a group of family, trusted courtiers and close friends, there’s a kind of freedom that she obviously didn’t have very often.”
(Reporting by Sarah Mills; Editing by Marie-Louise Gumuchian and Alexandra Hudson)