Stick Girl’s life changed forever in 1937, when her uncle King Edward VII exiled himself from the Buckingham balcony forever and fled into the comforts of Wallis Simpon’s bony clavicle. Her father became King when she was 11, and you know the rest from there: Churchill, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Beatlemania, the Troubles, the Spice Girls, Mad Cow Disease, and finally, Megxit. Lilibet saw it all, but it’s lonely at the top of the pops, and even her sister Princess Margo couldn’t understand any of it.
Today, the Royal Collection Trust has graced us with an early memento of the young princess’s solitudinous childhood, a recounting in her own handwriting of her father King George VI’s coronation on May 12, 1937. The title page has a dedication, a title, and a sign off.
To Mummy and Papa
In Memory of The Coronation
Always by herself, the poor girl. Heavy is the head that wears the blood-diamond tiara.
To summate her little letter: On Coronation Day, the Marines woke her up with their tooting and hollering at 5 a.m. She couldn’t finish her gruel because she was too excited. She kissed mummy, put on a puffy gown, hiked on up to the balcony (stickless, mind you), and basically never left. It’s sweet to see her impeccable, girlish handwriting and her sense of duty in documenting the day, as if 1,000 Fleet Street newspapermen and girl bloggers didn’t have their noses glued to their notebooks, following her every move. And she uses more exclamation marks than you’d expect!
Looking at this letter, one can’t help but feel a little sorry about the life thrust upon Lilibet By Herself. I’m glad she was able to find a special friend late in life to make the days a little less lonely.