Christmas cards sent to Margaret Thatcher from the Royal Family, 1988.Stock Code: 123715
Royal Christmas cards to Margaret ThatcherMargaret Thatcher's own collection of Christmas cards sent to her by members of the British Royal Family in 1988, including cards from Princess Diana and Prince Charles, the Queen and Prince Philip, and the Queen Mother. Such cards to a Prime Minister become their property rather than belonging to the government, and as of such Margaret Thatcher kept the cards in her personal possessions until her death, whereafter Peter Harrington acquired them directly from the estate. They here appear on the market for the first time, presented in custom-made box in Tory blue, for both presentation and preservation.
Margaret Thatcher and the Royal Family had strained relations at times - these relations are the basis for the fourth series of The Crown - yet this should not detract from Thatcher's fervent belief in the institution of monarchy. Correct perceptions that the relationship between the Queen and Thatcher was not especially warm, and that Thatcher was no fan of the upper crust which the Royal Family topped, does not undermine the fact that Thatcher did nothing to weaken the institution, and moreover presided over a strengthening of the Family's popular support over her decade in power. The cards represent this strained, significant relationship in an especially human way. Of particular resonance is the Christmas card from Princess Diana - as an artefact linking the two defining women of the 1980s, Thatcher and Diana, the card can have few equals.
The year 1988 was consequential for both Thatcher and the Royal Family, seeing the birth of Princess Beatrice, Thatcher becoming the longest serving Prime Minister of the 20th century, and her famous Bruges Speech.
Comprising the cards of:
i) Prince Charles and Princess Diana: inscribed by Charles "from Charles and Diana's signature: Diana.", with the printed message "Wishing you a very Happy Christmas and New Year". With the Prince of Wales's crowned insignia within a Garter belt and Princess Diana's crowned coat of arms stamped in gilt on the front cover, and with a photograph within a red ruled border of Charles and Diana with Princes William and Harry pasted on the interior.
ii) Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip: autopen signed by both "Elizabeth R and Philip 1988", with the printed message "With best wishes for Christmas and the New Year". With a printed photograph on the front cover of the Queen Mother, the Queen and her new grandchild Princess Beatrice, along with the Queen and Prince Philip's crowned cyphers within Garter belts printed on the interior.
iii) The Queen Mother: signed "from Elizabeth R", with the printed message "With best wishes for Christmas and the New Year 1988". With the Queen Mother's crown stamped in gilt on the front cover, and with a photograph of the Queen Mother pasted on the interior.
iv) Princess Anne and Captain Mark Phillips (estimated date): inscribed by Anne "To you both, from Anne and Mark's signature: Mark", with the printed message "With Best Wishes for a Happy and Peaceful Christmas and New Year". With their joint monogram printed on the front cover, and with a photograph of Anne and her children pasted on the interior.
v) Princess Alice: inscribed "To you both from Alice.", with the printed message "With Best Wishes for Christmas and the New Year". With Princess Alice's crowned monogram printed on the front cover, and with a photograph of Princess Alice pasted on the interior under which is written "1988".
vi) Prince Andrew and Sarah, Duchess of York: inscribed by Sarah "Prime Minister and Denis, Sarah and Andrew's signature: Andrew.", with the printed message "Happy Christmas". With their crowned joint monogram on the front cover, and with a photograph of the couple and the newborn Princess Beatrice pasted on the interior.
vii) Princess Alexandra and Sir Angus Ogilvy: inscribed by Aelxandra "To you both, with all our good wishes Angus + Alexandra". An unfolded card, with a photograph from their son James Ogilvy's wedding pasted on front, within a ruled border topped by their crowned joint monogram, verso blank.
viii) Duke and Duchess of Gloucester: inscribed by Birgitte "Prime Minister and Mr. Thatcher Birgitte and Richard's signature: Richard", with the printed message "With all good wishes for Christmas and the New Year". With their crowned joint monogram printed on the front cover, and with a family photograph pasted on the interior within a gilt ruled border.
ix) Prince and Princess Michael of Kent: inscribed by Marie Christine "To you both, Michael's signature: Michael and Marie Christine and Freddie + Ella", with the printed message "With best wishes for Christmas and the New Year". With their crowned joint monogram printed on the front cover, and with a pasted photograph of them and their children on the interior with "1988" written underneath.
Provenance: the estate of Baroness Thatcher.
Together 9 Christmas cards. Housed in a dark blue flat-back cloth box by the Chelsea Bindery.
In very good condition.
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