When it comes to the British Royal Family, Queen Elizabeth II is the undisputed crown jewel. She’s got style, she’s got class, and she’s got a whole lot of random assets to her name. But what exactly comes along with getting the royal treatment? Check out some of the most surprising and downright odd items on this list of Queen Elizabeth II’s possessions.
1. A Collection of Fabergé Eggs
Between 1885 and 1917, Peter Carl Fabergé created an estimated 69 jeweled eggs, primarily for the Russian royal family. Now known as Fabergé eggs, they were treasured for being detailed and intricate, with their shell covered in gold, gemstones, and diamonds. Only 57 of those eggs still exist today, with Queen Elizabeth II being the proud owner of three of them.
But the Queen’s collection does not just include eggs. Over the years, Fabergé made tons of other trinkets, including a cigarette case for the Queen’s great-grandfather King Edward VII, a miniature tea set, an enamel elephant, a paper cutter, and tons of other everyday objects that were made into decadent pieces. In total, the Queen owns 580 Fabergé items. After all, who could possibly go without a diamond and gold thermometer?
2. A Private Box At Wimbledon
Every single year, tennis fans shell out heaping sums of money just to get a seat at the Wimbledon tennis championships. And for those super fans who want to pick up a court-side seat, it will basically cost them their entire life savings. Luckily for Queen Elizabeth II, there’s literally always a court-side seat reserved for her.
The Royal Box at Wimbledon has a seat saved for the Queen at all times, and anyone else who wants to sit in that particular section needs to be invited by the Royal Family. But even with the best seat in the entire stadium, Queen Elizabeth rarely comes to watch. In 2010, she popped by for a visit during the tournament, which marked her first time using her coveted seat in 30 years.
3. Race Horses
Owning a horse has long been considered a sign of wealth. But how about owning 30 horses? Well, that is a sign of wealth fit for a queen (the Queen of England, to be exact). Queen Elizabeth II is known to be a huge fan of horses, and is a pretty talented rider herself.
Reports say that at any given time, Queen Elizabeth has 30 racehorses training to be shown in competitions and events. The Queen has been riding horses for her entire life, having received her first horse, Peggy, at the age of 4. Peggy was a gift from her grandfather, King George V. Getting a horse from a king? That’d be enough to put anyone up on a high horse.
4. Her Own Personal ATM
Even with all of Queen Elizabeth’s possessions, it is actually really hard to picture her going out shopping at all. It is even harder to imagine her rummaging through her purse for some change or cash, like the rest of us normal, non-royal people. But just in case the situation arises, the Queen is particularly prepared.
That is because Queen Elizabeth II has her own personal ATM right there in her home. In the basement of Buckingham Palace, Coutts Bank set up an ATM specifically to be used by the Royal Family. It seems that even a queen cannot escape some annoying cash-only policies.
5. An Offshore Wind Farm
She’s the queen of going green, apparently. Among the long list of strange things that Queen Elizabeth just so happens to own are a few wind farms off the shore near the British Isles. Since the Royal Family technically owns the seabed around the British Isles, they lease that real estate to wind energy companies.
This includes the Thanet Wind Farm, which, at the time that it was built in 2010, was the world’s largest offshore wind farm. And the best part? These farms, in turn, earn the Royal Family a ton of money. How much? Well, let’s just say that deals with offshore wind developers accounted as being the most profitable business deal for The Crown Estate, Queen Elizabeth II’s company.
6. The UK Shoreline
For some, owning some property right along the beach is a dream or a goal. For the lucky few, a beachside home is a pretty nice reality. But for the Queen of England, a quaint getaway cottage by the beach is something to nearly scoff at. A measly beachside home? That’s cute. Try owning the actual shoreline.
That’s right, Queen Elizabeth II owns just about half of the shoreline around not only England, but also Wales and Northern Ireland. The rule dates all the way back to the 1300s, when the English sovereign was named as having official ownership of the shoreline. That’s some pretty prime real estate to add to her already eye-popping property portfolio.
7. Three Islands
As if being the Queen of the United Kingdom was not enough, Queen Elizabeth II can also say that she is the owner of three of her very own islands. Technically, the Isle of Man in the Irish Sea, along with Jersey and Guernsey in the English Channel, are all owned by the Queen.
The islands, of course, are self-governing, so Queen Elizabeth II’s ownership of the properties is mostly just for tradition’s sake. In fact, the tradition goes so far back in British royal law that there’s no protocol for a woman owning the islands. Instead, official documentation defines the owner as Lord of Mann instead of Lady, and Duke of Jersey and Guernsey rather than Duchess. But would anyone expect more from a place named the Isle of Man?
8. Every Dolphin in the UK
Not only does Queen Elizabeth II technically own every single dolphin within a three-mile radius of the United Kingdom’s shores, but she also owns every whale and sturgeon too. Because why not? Okay, but actually the origin of this rule comes from a statute that dates all the way back to 1324 and the days of King Edward II.
The statute states that the King shall have complete ownership of “whales and sturgeons taken in the sea or elsewhere” when they are captured within 3 miles from the coastline. Later, dolphins were also added to the statute, expanding the Royal Family’s strange ownership portfolio.
9. Westminster Abbey
Westminster Abbey might be one of, if not the, most famous buildings in the United Kingdom and one of the best-known churches in the entire world. And as if living in Buckingham Palace is not enough, Queen Elizabeth II can also say that she owns the world-renowned Westminster Abbey.
The royal church has seen its fair share of activity over the centuries. Since it was founded all the way back in the year 960, Westminster Abbey has hosted hundreds of royal funerals, almost every single royal coronation, and 16 royal weddings. We would say that it is pretty much one of the best event spaces anyone could own.
10. All Of The Swans in The River Thames
There are a ton of peculiar traditions within the Royal Family, least of all those lavishly elaborate hats that have become a hallmark for the British monarchy. But we would argue that no tradition is quite as strange as the annual Swan Upping ceremony, where every swan in England is rounded up and counted.
What is even stranger is that every single one of those swans is officially owned by Queen Elizabeth II. Yes, all 437 of them, by last year’s count. According to the rules, “The Queen retains the right to claim ownership of any unmarked mute swan swimming in open waters, but this right is mainly exercised on certain stretches of the River Thames.”
11. Most Parks In London
Buckingham Palace features a jaw-dropping 77,000 square meters of floor space and 775 separate rooms, including 78 bathrooms, 188 staff bedrooms, and 92 offices. But it seems that there just is not enough space for the petite monarch to stretch her legs. Luckily, she can get her steps up in basically any of the parks in London, considering she owns them all.
Queen Elizabeth II not only owns Hyde Park, but she also is the official owner of The Regent’s Park, The Green Park, Kensington Gardens, and Primrose Hill. Oh yeah, and lest we forget: all that doesn’t even include the fact that she owns the garden at Buckingham Palace, a.k.a the largest private garden in London.
12. Two Giant Tortoises
Years ago, Queen Elizabeth II surpassed her great-great grandmother Queen Victoria as the longest-living and longest-reigning British monarch in history. Born on April 21, 1926, she ascended to the throne in 1952 following the death of her father King George VI, and has been going strong ever since. But what can outlive the oldest queen ever?
Aldabra tortoises can have a lifespan of up to 250 years. And luckily for Queen Elizabeth II, she has not one, but two Aldabra tortoises. The odd pets were given to the Queen in 1972 as a gift from the government and the people of the Seychelles. The animals, like most of the others given to the Queen as gifts, were then housed in the London Zoo.
13. An Expansive Art Collection
Forget the pressure of overseeing an entire kingdom and commonwealth. As a queen, Queen Elizabeth II oversees The Royal Collection, the largest private art collection in the world owned by the British Royal Family. The Royal Collection includes over one million works of art, with everything from drawings to paintings to sculptures and textiles.
The art collection’s impressive size is made even more staggering when you consider some of the big names it hosts, including Rembrandt and da Vinci. These works by some of the greatest artistic masters to have ever lived are spread throughout 13 royal residences in the United Kingdom, like Windsor Castle and Kensington Palace, which are both open for public viewing.
14. A Dorgi Collection
If there is one thing that everyone knows Queen Elizabeth II loves, it’s Corgis. For her 18th birthday, then-Princess Elizabeth was given a Pembroke Welsh Corgi named Susan. In the nearly 80 years since, all 30 Corgis owned by the Queen over her reign have all been descendants of Susan. She loves the breed so much that she has had at least one Corgi at any given time from 1933-2018.
But in 2018, a beautiful tradition came to an end with the death of her final Corgi, named Willow. Instead, the Queen is now the proud owner of two “Dorgis,” Vulcan and Candy, both products of breeding between one of her Corgis and her late sister Princess Margaret’s beloved dachshund. And the reason why she won’t get another Corgi? It has been reported that “she didn’t want to leave any young dog behind.”
15. Gold Mines in Scotland
When anyone is living as a royal, enjoying a lavish life surrounded by gold seems pretty much par for the course. But it is one thing to own gold as a royal. It is an entirely different thing to own the actual gold mines themselves.
According to The Crown Estate, which manages the holdings of the British Royal Family, “The Crown Estate owns virtually all the naturally-occurring gold and silver in the United Kingdom.” These mines are collectively referred to as “Mines Royal.” So if anyone does get to marry into the royal family, then they’ve quite literally hit a gold mine.
16. An Extensive Car Collection
There are massive car collections, and then there is Queen Elizabeth II’s car collection, which makes every rap star’s garage look like a blip on her radar. While the exact number of vehicles is unknown, the entire collection is said to cost way above $10 million. That collection includes the Bentley State Limousine, an official state car created specifically for Queen Elizabeth II.
Despite all these cars, the Queen does not actually have a license. Luckily, royal law does not require her to have a license to drive. She was a mechanic and military truck driver during World War II, and apparently, she still knows her way around a car. According to Time Magazine, she is “the only British monarch in history properly trained to change a spark plug.”
17. An Aberdeen Angus Cow
It’s not easy being queen. Sometimes, the role of being the monarch and traditional head of state for the United Kingdom includes a packed travel schedule. Of course, with travel comes gifts, and over the years, Queen Elizabeth II has collected her fair share of strange, animal-related gifts, including two sloths from a 1968 state visit to Brazil.
But later, during a trip to Canada while on official palace business, the Queen was gifted not one, but two gigantic Aberdeen Angus cows while she visited the Calgary Stampede agricultural show. Unfortunately, the cows could not fit on her flight back home, so she was not able to milk the gift for all it was worth. Instead, she left them in Canada to be taken care of during her absence.
18. Queen Victoria’s Sketchbook
Back in the 19th century, watercolors were becoming increasingly popular, and even Queen Victoria wanted to learn how to paint. So, as any royal would, she hired some of the most well-known professional watercolor painters at the time to teach her and her family. By the end of her long life, Queen Victoria herself had become quite the painter and drawer.
Back then, she kept all of her works in a sketchbook. Today, Queen Elizabeth II is the sole owner of her ancestor’s original sketchbook and all of the priceless pieces of artwork that can be found inside its bindings. In fact, it is said by some historians to be potentially the most expensive item that Queen Elizabeth II has in her possession.
19. Six Different Castles
Everyone has heard the fairy tales that feature in their plots a princess or prince living their lives in lavish castles. But for Queen Elizabeth II, life is far more grand than even the fairy tales. The Queen of the United Kingdom does not just have one castle, she has six.
Beyond her primary residence of Buckingham Palace, Queen Elizabeth II owns Windsor Castle, also known as the largest occupied castle in the world, along with Holyrood Palace in Scotland and Hillsborough Castle in Northern Ireland. As if that wasn’t enough, she spends her Christmases at the Sandringham Estate and her summers at Balmoral Castle in Scotland.
20. 1,000 Diamond Tiara
Is someone even an actual monarch if they don’t have a crown? When it comes to Queen Elizabeth II, there’s no questioning her status when she dons her tiara with 1,333 diamonds. But out of all the 1,333 diamonds on the crown, arguably the most exquisite one of them all is the four-carat yellow diamond featured in the center.
The crown is one of the Queen’s most famous pieces of jewelry, and she has worn it to every State Opening of Parliament since 1952, as if she even needed an excuse to wear it. It was originally made in 1821 for the coronation of the Queen’s great-great-great granduncle, King George IV.
21. Launer Handbag Collection
With all of these lavish possessions, the Queen has to have something to carry all of her fabulous belongings around in. And if there’s one thing she is loyal to beyond her Royal Family, it’s the London luxury designer Launer. Queen Elizabeth II is rarely ever pictured without holding a Launer handbag.
And while we might only see one at a time, the Queen is known to have accumulated an insane collection of these bags. The CEO of Launer has estimated that Queen Elizabeth owns somewhere around 2,000 of these $2,500 bags. Ironically enough, her favorite Launer bag just so happens to be from the collection called, well, Royale. Figures.
22. A Golden Record
Not every queen can say that they have a music record that reached gold status, but Queen Elizabeth II sure can. The honor can be traced back to her 50th year as queen in 2002, when the Royal Family threw her a Golden Jubilee. The Beatles’ own Sir Paul McCartney wrote a special song for the event called “Party at the Palace.”
After a handful of stars performed at the party, a record company released the concert in CD form for all of us commoners who couldn’t make the actual party. A week after it had been released, 100,000 copies were sold, propelling the record to achieve gold status. The Queen now has a framed copy of that very same golden record.
23. The National Collection of Mulberries
When someone gets an order from Her Majesty The Queen, we can very well assume that it will be followed. Take for example the order given to Mark Lane, the head gardener at Buckingham Palace. One day in 2000, he got a request from Queen Elizabeth II to plant a “definitive collection of mulberry trees in the palace garden.”
And while it might have been a strange request, the Queen got exactly what she wanted. Now, the grounds of Buckingham Palace host the official British National Collection of mulberries, because that is apparently a real thing. The collection features a full 29 species of mulberries, far more than you likely ever realized existed.
24. A Bat Colony
Of all the things Queen Elizabeth II has in her homes, this one might just be the weirdest. It has been reported that her summer home, Balmoral Castle in eastern Scotland, a small colony of bats have taken up residence in the ceiling (a pretty good place to crash, we’d say). Now, one might think to themselves, “With all of that royal money, can’t someone call an exterminator?”
Apparently, Queen Elizabeth II actually likes sharing her home with the bats, and has asked for them not to be removed. If that seems like a funny thing to imagine, now picture the fact that she has reportedly taken up the task of trying to catch some of the bats herself, using a butterfly net. Yes, the Queen catches her own bats.
25. Some Pretty Prime Real Estate
For anyone else in England, it is unbelievably hard to find good real estate in London. But for Queen Elizabeth II, seemingly, the limit does not exist. Her real estate portfolio is basically a list of London’s most popular tourist attractions.
Maybe some people have heard of some of Queen Elizabeth II’s properties, like the Tower of London, Regent Street, or Trafalgar Square? And beyond literally owning a few of the most popular tourist destinations in the United Kingdom, the Queen also owns 25,000 acres of forest and 4 million square feet of retail space. We just hope that she got a good deal on rent.
The Most Expensive High Schools In The United States, Ranked
Forget saving up for college, these high schools actually cost more than some of the most expensive university tuitions. Each year, 24/7 Wall Street puts out its official rankings of the most expensive high schools in the country. With those grades in mind, here’s which schools’ price tags made our list — and what exactly goes on inside those schools that makes them so coveted.
No Retreat, No Surrender: The Soldier Who Fought In World War II For Over 30 Years
World War II and the destruction it wrought on the planet had ended long ago, but for some reason, on a remote island, peace was yet to be felt. Perpetrated by culprits who nobody had been able to catch, fields were burned, airport runways were ransacked, and gunfire would occasionally spray out of the forest. As the body count began to climb, the question remained: who on Earth was this soldier still convinced the war was on?
The Once-Popular Purchasing Habits That Most Millennials Are Refusing To Buy Into
There’s no debate about it, times are changing. And with changing times comes changing demands for some of the products that used to be considered essential. For millennials, the age group born between 1981-1996, some of the products America used to not be able to live without are now being ditched all together. From household appliances to popular food products, read on to see some of the surprising effects of millennial buying habits.