The royal wedding (opens in new tab) (a.k.a the biggest event of the year) is two months away—I repeat two months. With the date fast approaching, I couldn't help but wonder: What does one buy a royal to mark their nuptials? For starters, not chocolate (opens in new tab)—all sweets are immediately destroyed in case of poisoning. Click through to see the fanciest gifts the royal family has received over the years, and be sure your calendars are marked for May 19 (opens in new tab).
Meghan Markle is set to officially join the royal family when she marries Prince Harry, but she's already receiving gifts. The first one was an apron (opens in new tab)—which seems fitting since Harry proposed to her while they were famously cooking a chicken dinner together (opens in new tab). The gift was given to her by her future brother-in-law, Prince William.
A "Vessel of Friendship"
In 2015, China's president Xi Jinping gifted the Queen with this bronze and gold model ship (opens in new tab) that was sailed by the navigator and diplomat Zheng He of the Ming Dynasty. The dove and olive branch on the bow of the ship are symbols in China of peace and friendship.
A grow-your-own-girlfriend kit
Before he was engaged to Meghan Markle, the prince's sister-in-law gave him a kit that would help him to grow his own girlfriend (opens in new tab). Of course it's not actually possible, but it shows Kate has a pretty great sense of humor.
A golden lacquer box
This deep, rectangular box, with the image of a heron standing on one leg, was given to the Queen in 1953—the same year she was coronated (opens in new tab). It was likely presented to her for the occasion by Emperor Showa (Hirohito) of Japan .
Back in April 2009, the Obamas gave Queen Elizabeth an iPod (opens in new tab), pre-loaded with speeches from Barack, including his inauguration speech. The Queen reportedly already had an iPod.
An intricate bracelet
The Duchess of Cambridge was gifted this beautifully crafted bracelet (opens in new tab) during her visit to the National Indigenous Training Academy in 2014.
A textile scale from a dragon costume
In 1975, the Dragon Dance Committee presented the Queen the form of a "dragon scale (opens in new tab)," on red and gold silk-embroidered cloth during her visit to Hong Kong.
A racy shower cap
It's not gold or anything, but once upon a time, Prince Harry gave his grandmother a shower cap with the phrase "Ain't Life a Bitch" on it for Christmas. And I could only imagine this being Queen Elizabeth's reaction (opens in new tab), as she reportedly thought it was hilarious.
A model of Diwan-i-Khas (Hall of Private Audience)
This miniature, silver model of a square pavilion in Red Fort, Delhi, was given to Queen Elizabeth. India's prime minister, Morarji Desai, presented her with it during her Silver Jubilee in 1977 (opens in new tab).
Basketball jerseys from LeBron
The Cleveland Cavaliers player gifted the Duke and Duchess with a basketball jersey that said "Cambridge," and an even smaller one for Prince George. LeBron James also sparked a lot of controversy (opens in new tab) after he put his arm around Kate in these photos—a big royal protocol no-no.
A puppet in a wooden case
The Queen was given this doll-like puppet during her State Visit to Yogyakarta, Java. According to the Royal Trust Collection (opens in new tab)'s website, "The puppet is of a traditional Indonesian style known as wayang golek."
A leather toilet seat
The royal family sits in luxury (opens in new tab) everywhere they go, including on the other kind of throne. Princess Anne reportedly gave her brother Prince Charles a white leather toilet seat as a joke, but Charles loves it so much, he apparently carries it on all of his overseas tours.
An ornate wooden portrait egg
During a visit to Buckingham Palace, the Ambassador of Ukraine, Mr. Volodymyr Khandogiy, presented the Queen with this ornate wooden egg (opens in new tab), complete with her portrait.
17 soft toys, two lollipops, three toy trains, a toy pram, three dresses, two pairs of socks, and a dreamcatcher
During their royal overseas tour to Poland, Prince George and Princess Charlotte were gifted with tons of toys, clothes, and candy. Between the two of them, they got 59 presents (opens in new tab) to be exact.
A personalized pair of rugby boots
While visiting the Paignton Rugby Club in 2015, Prince Harry was gifted a pair of Adidas rugby boots (opens in new tab)—and they were even personalized with his name on the exterior of both shoes.
A golden gong
This white gold gong, suspended by two black horns, was the object given to the Queen in 1995 by His Majesty Tuanku Ja'afar ibni Almarhum Tuanku Abdul Rahman, The Yang DiPeurtan Agong X of Malaysia (betcha can't say that five times fast). The gift is decorated in Malaysia's coat of arms (opens in new tab).
A commemorative bowl
During her visit to the Royal Botanical Gardens (opens in new tab) in Peradeniya, the Queen was presented with this commemorative silver bowl. It was given to her by the Ceylon (now known as Sri Lanka) Department of Agriculture in 1954.
Cashmere sweaters and mohair scarves
The royals have a running joke that they will only get each other funny things for Christmas—but nobody mentioned that to Princess Diana after she joined the family. During her first holiday (opens in new tab) with them, she bought everyone their own cashmere sweater and mohair scarf.
A model of Pashupatinath Temple
King Mahendra of Nepal presented the Queen with this small replica of the Pashupatinath Temple (opens in new tab) in October 1960—it has pagoda-style roofing and lions at each of the four doorways.
A silver tea set
The Queen sure does like her tea, which is why this Burmese silver tea set, presented to her by President U Nu of Burma in 1955, was the perfect gift. The silver was embossed to represent Burmese lifestyle and foliage (opens in new tab).
A limited edition Tiffany sterling silver honeycomb and bee bud vase
In 2015, Michelle Obama sent the Queen (opens in new tab) quite a few extravagant gifts, including the limited edition Tiffany vase, "a gift box containing lemon verbena tea, a candle, and two small pots of honey, and a jar of honey butter from the White House kitchen garden."
A golden invitation
In 1972, Queen Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh received an invitation from the King and Queen of Thailand for a State Visit. The exterior of the box was gold-painted metal (opens in new tab), but the inside was simply cardboard.
A hand-painted, model bus
The model bus, painted with a portrait of the Queen and Prince Philip, was given to them by the British High Commission Drivers in 1997. "Truck art has developed in Pakistan since the 1940s, combining traditional motifs from Sikhism and Islam with modern pictures and images of national leaders," according to the Royal Collection Trust's website (opens in new tab).
A Buddhist prayer shawl
Blessed by the Dalai Lama in 1962, this shawl, known as the Khada (opens in new tab), was passed along to the Queen. Similar to a scarf, the Kahda is woven with tiny bands, and the threads are left to hand loose at the ends.
Three marble seals
Two of the rectangular Chinese seals (opens in new tab) were specifically presented to Queen Elizabeth and the other one to her husband Prince Philip by Singapore's president Wee Kim Wee in 1989.
A beaded Yoruba throne
This beaded throne was gifted to the Queen in 1956 by the people of Nigeria (opens in new tab). It was placed in the 2017 "Royal Gifts" exhibit.
A pair of portrait vases
President Islam Karimov of Uzbekistan presented the Queen and Prince Philip with a matching set of floral vases (opens in new tab) in 1993.
A decorated ostrich egg
For Queen Elizabeth's 91st birthday, Kenyan president Uhuru Kenyatta gave her an ostrich egg decorated with Maasai beadwork (opens in new tab).
An astronaut flag
British astronaut Tim Peake—who's worked at the International Space Station—took the flag directly from his uniform (opens in new tab) and gave it to the Queen. He was staying in Windsor Castle in April 2017 when he gave the gift to her.
A golden box
During her 1972 State Visit to Brunei, the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei, Hassanal Bolkiah, gave the Queen a golden, octagonal box (opens in new tab), with pine detailing.
I’m currently working at Dotdash Meredith as the Celeb & Entertainment E-Commerce Lead contributing affiliate content for People.com and InStyle.com. I’m basically like your personal shopper, from writing about that cozy loungewear set you didn’t know you needed to keeping tabs on the best sales and deals on the internet. I’m also a pro at finding affordable dupes for celebrity looks and I love to dig into the data to strategize content opportunities.
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