In times past, monarchs engaged in elaborate and semi-public rituals conducted from their beds, inviting witnesses to everything from childbirth (to verify heritage), to conducting state business, to simply retiring for the evening and rising in the morning. Indeed, the bed served as an alternate throne for many monarchs.
Not so much for Queen Elizabeth II. Like everyone else, the Queen has her small habits. Those who know her well say she lives her life in a simple manner, really like everyone else, and enjoys quite a wide variety of pastimes and activities. With the success of the Netflix series “The Crown,” now in season 4, we thought you might be interested in knowing a bit more about the sleeping habits of Queen Elizabeth II.
In summary, the Queen seems to have quite a nice sleeping routine.
Getting to sleep
“Uneasy lies the head that wears a crown,” proposes Shakespeare in Henry IV, but maybe not so much, especially if you know how to live like a queen.
The magazine Apartment Therapy recently bubbled up an old Vanity Fair article by historian Robert K. Massie that outlines all the things the Queen travels with, shedding some light on her very specific bedtime rituals.
We were intrigued to discover that in addition to her own down pillow, the 92-year-old British monarch also makes sure to pack a familiar household item: a regular, run-of-the mill hot water bottle. In addition, of course, there are additional creature comforts to be considered.
“When traveling abroad for a number of weeks, she may take up to six tons of luggage: hats, dresses, blouses, skirts, ball gowns, tiaras, gloves, stockings, and dozens of pairs of shoes. She also takes her own feather pillow, hot-water bottle, favorite china tea set, and special white kid lavatory seat.”
If you don’t have quite that extensive a support system to make you feel comfortable, here are some tips to help you fall asleep in your own way.
The art of waking a sovereign
Since her royal wedding on November 20, 1947, Queen Elizabeth II has not shared a bedroom with her husband, the Duke of Edinburgh. She has almost always slept alone, as the aristocratic tradition demands. With the exception of July 9, 1982, when an intruder woke her, here is how her day normally begins in Buckingham Palace.
In stark contrast to the elaborate levée of French kings, the Queen keeps it simple. At 7:30 a.m., the maid in charge of the significant task of waking the monarch performs it by simply opening the curtains of the royal chamber. She then brings Elizabeth II a silver tray with a morning snack: a steaming pot of Earl Gray tea and a glass of orange juice. All of this is performed in silence.
The only living beings allowed to make noise in the presence of the newly-wakened Gracious Majesty are her pet corgis. When the pack of dogs bursts into her room, the queen strokes them one by one, then heads for the bathroom. She then proceeds to enjoy a lukewarm bath that does not exceed ~ 7 inches in depth - she can put on her first outfit of the day.
And if you don’t have a valet, maid, and a pack of corgis to welcome you to the new day? Don’t wake up grumpy, instead, consider all the possibilities the day presents.
A great way to make you feel like royalty when you awake is to invest in hotel quality bedding from Downlite. For a surprisingly affordable amount, you can enjoy the finest mattress pads, sheets, comforters and pillows all year long.
If you would like any help or professional advice before ordering your bedding, you may contact our customer service representatives by email, and they will assist you in your decision-making.