Monday, May 13, 2019

iON | Trump Responds to Queen of England’s Brooch Politics


11 May 2019


“Brooch warfare” Explained
by Aja Romano
19 July 2018

Her majesty’s brooches are a ubiquitous fashion statement — they’ve been a prominent part of her wardrobe her whole life, and her fondness for them is so well-known that they’ve become a common gift presented to her by foreign dignitaries and other guests and friends.

And these jewels are frequently interpreted to carry significant meanings beyond “here’s a shiny thing on my lapel.” For instance, there’s the huge True Lover’s Knot brooch, which the queen wore at two royal weddings — the 1960 wedding of her sister Princess Margaret, and the 2011 wedding of her grandson Prince William.

Additionally, there are multiple brooches that have been given as gifts to Queen Elizabeth or her predecessors by various countries, and which she has subsequently worn — you guessed it — while attending state functions hosted by those countries. Thus, it has become generally accepted among jewel watchers that the queen frequently uses her jewels to indicate loyalty and friendship between the UK and other nations.

Queen Elizabeth wore three brooches during Trump’s visit. She donned the first one on the day of his arrival, at the height of the publicity surrounding his appearance as well as the height of the controversy.

The brooch in question is colloquially known as the “American state visit brooch.” That’s not an official name — it was made up by the author of the Queen’s Jewel Vault blog. The media seems to have run with it anyway, perhaps because up until now, very few people outside these royal fashion fans were keeping a close eye on what jewels the queen wore.

The so-called “American state visit brooch” is an antique gift, made in the US in the 1950s in and given to the queen by the Obamas during an official state visit to the UK in 2011.

Small and relatively unassuming, the flower made of gold, diamonds, and agate attracted little attention at first. But when sharp-eyed observers realized the queen was wearing a gift from Trump’s most prominent political enemy, tongues started wagging.

Next up: day two of Trump’s visit, during which he sat down with England’s prime minister at a state banquet that was notably not hosted at Buckingham Palace and was unattended by Queen Elizabeth, in contrast to her treatment of the Obamas. Throughout the day, Elizabeth wore a gift presented to her by the governor general of Canada in 2017.

It’s the Sapphire Jubilee Snowflake Brooch, and it was given to commemorate her 65 years on the throne. But to SamuraiKnitter, Queen Elizabeth’s choice to wear it during Trump’s visit was an in-your-face demonstration of loyalty to a country Trump has had serious issues with of late.

For the last occasion — the awkward moment when the ruler of the British Commonwealth stood around waiting for nearly 15 minutes to meet Trump — the queen wore an un-ostentatious diamond teardrop brooch.

The brooch was a gift passed down to her by her mother, who wore it during the 1952 state funeral for her husband, King George VI (Queen Elizabeth’s father). It appears prominently in the famous “Three Queens” photo from the occasion.

Of course, it’s impossible to know for certain that the queen intended to send the message that dining with Trump was the social equivalent of attending her father’s funeral — or, just to toss out another metaphorical possibility, that Trump’s presidency represents the symbolic death of the American experiment.

But either way, Trump detractors seem to be delighted by the idea of Queen Elizabeth supporting the #resistance with bosom gemstones. Read the entire article at Vox

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