5 things you probably never would have guessed were presents to Queen Elizabeth II

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Birthdays, jubilees or official visits — the queen is constantly showered with presents. Elizabeth II has been on the throne so long, by now, her collection of gifts contains some oddities indeed.

What do you give to someone who already has everything?

People rack their brains to find the perfect gift for Queen Elizabeth. When Prince William’s wife Kate spent her first Christmas with the Windsors, she chose to bring along a jar of her grandmother’s homemade chutney. Apparently she chose wisely, because the condiment was dished up the very next day.

Not everyone comes up with the right gift for the British monarch, however. Some presents are decidedly odd, including live animals and — well meant but strange — a portrait presented last year in Berlin of Her Majesty as a young girl.

Animals and paintings

The latter was painted by the German artist Nicole Leidenfrost, an interpretation of an old photograph that shows Elizabeth on a blue pony with her father. The queen was lukewarm. “That’s a funny color for a horse,” she said. “Is that supposed to be my father?” Embarrassed, German President Joachim Gauck pointed out another gift: a box of Lübeck Marzipan candies. You can’t go wrong with that.

The British press agreed that the painting was awful, as if scrawled by a five-year-old, in short: an insult to the queen. Take a look for yourself at the German painting and a few other odd gifts presented to the queen over the course of her 90 years.

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