As it turns out, the Queen of the United Kingdom and your grandma have more in common than you initially thought. Perhaps it’s a generational hobby, the collecting of stamps that is.
After all, we must acknowledge that the 94-year-old Queen Elizabeth II came of age in a time when letter writing was an important means of communication. There’s something that separates the monarch from the rest of her fellow stamp collectors though. For her, it’s more than just a hobby.
The Royal Philatelic Collection
The Queen’s collection of stamps is also known as the Royal Philatelic Collection and includes items that can be dated all the way back to 1864. It is reportedly regarded as one of the world’s best stamp collections.
Although she has developed a habit of acquiring stamps herself and significantly added to the collection, Queen Elizabeth came by a lot of collectibles from the monarchs who led before her.
Thus, it’s not surprising that Her Majesty loves showing the items on display to the heads of state who visit her in her home at Buckingham Palace.
A Hobby that Pays Off
Due to the value of certain stamps, the collection is considered to be the Queen’s top assets. Case in point is one Mauritian stamp that’s reportedly valued at over $2 million.
It’s also worth noting that the collection actually belongs to her personally instead of the crown. This means that she can, just like the rulers before her did, pass on the stamps to her children or grandchildren someday.
The hobby has also been quite profitable for the Queen. She’s sold some items from the collection and continues to invest in rare, high-value ones as well.
Just a couple of years ago, Queen Elizabeth spent more than $250,000 to buy an 1840 set of 10 Penny Blacks, which are said to be a unique find.
While buying one-of-a-kind stamps can get expensive really quick, Her Majesty seems to know how to balance her expenditure well. After all, she’s gained a reputation for being a frugal monarch throughout her many decades on the throne.
This tightness when it comes to spending money is often attributed to the Queen growing up during a time of war, which made her quite disciplined.
On the bright side, the same frugality helped her build a sizable fortune of about $500 million. The monarchy, as a whole, is worth $88 billion.