What Secret Items Did Queen Elizabeth Keep in Her Purse?

what in queen elizabeth purse
Source: mega

Jul. 25 2023, Published 5:24 p.m. ET

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If Queen Elizabeth suddenly put her handbag on the table, your time was up. It was her secret code to say she wanted to leave in five minutes.

When the purse was discreetly placed on the floor, it meant HRH was not enjoying the conversation and wanted to be rescued by her lady-in-waiting.

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what in queen elizabeth purse
Source: mega

Clearly, Elizabeth's handbag was one of her most important props — er, accessories. So, it should come as a surprise that she had a slew of them.

According to Phil Dampier, one of the authors of What's in the Queen's Handbag, HRH actually owned about 300 bags, including 30 or 40 of her favorites from Launer London, which has held the royal warrant to provide the sovereign's bags for more than four decades.

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what in queen elizabeth purse
Source: mega

Handmade from soft calf, lizard, ostrich or alligator skin, each Launer goes for upward of $2,000. Her Majesty favored the black patent Traviata, whose longer handle allowed her to shake hands easily.

But while Elizabeth may have switched up her bag from day to day, she generally kept the contents the same. So, what exactly did the queen tote in her tote?

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what in queen elizabeth purse
Source: mega

Nothing too royal-sounding, as it turns out: a tube of mints, a packet of doggie treats for her corgis and a few crossword puzzles carefully cut out from the daily newspapers by her staff to occupy her during her downtime.

In addition, she kept with her an array of good-luck charms — mostly gifts from her children — including miniature dogs, toy horses and tiny saddles.

Also inside: the queen's most prized possession, a small metal makeup case Prince Philip had made for her as a wedding gift, which she carried religiously for more than 60 years, said Dampier.

Add lipstick, a tiny mirror, sunglasses and reading glasses, and she was basically good to go, since anything else the sovereign needed was provided by her aides.

What Elizabeth didn't need, of course, was cash. Displaying her mischievous sense of humor at the Royal Ascot horse race in 2004, the monarch opened up her bag to reveal ... nothing. It was empty!

As a courtier old Dampier: "She has a superb sense of fun and knew she's renowned for not carrying any cash, so this was her little joke."

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