25 September 2013

Flashback: State Visit to the United Arab Emirates and Oman, 2010

In November 2010, the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh made a two-for-one state visit, stopping first in the United Arab Emirates and next in Oman. They were accompanied by the Duke of York, who at the time still held his title as the United Kingdom's Special Representative for International Trade and Investment.
Straight away on arrival in Abu Dhabi, the Queen gives us something to discuss. The brooch is an interesting one, the Gold Foliate Brooch. The hat's interesting too, perhaps not in a good way - but it served a purpose, as the Queen was heading to a mosque.
Video: Visiting a mosque
She threw a veil on over the hat and donned a long coat with a beaded leaf design to cover herself appropriately. She even ditched her shoes when called for, which was apparently quite newsworthy (though not as newsworthy as the engagement of Prince William and Kate Middleton just before this trip, as you will see reflected in the news report above).
Their time in the UAE was short, and didn't include a proper state banquet as we know them. But there was this formal meeting and exchange of gifts with President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan that gave us a gown, the Star, Riband, and Lesser George of the Order of the Garter plus some diamond sparkle: the Antique Girandole Earrings, a diamond collet necklace, the 10 Diamond Bar Brooch, the Baguette and Brilliant Bracelet, and her Diamond Evening Watch. The brooch was meant to just be at the top/back of the shoulder to secure the sash, but slipped forward when she put on her gift, the chain of the Order of Zayed. What's missing is obviously a tiara, but if I recall correctly, this event happened during the day (and tiaras are worn in the evening). Plus, Philip and Andrew are clearly not in white tie. Certainly an odd dress code compared to what we're used to with state visits.

Next stop: Oman and Sultan Qaboos bin Said Al Said, who happened to be celebrating his 40th year on the throne.
Brooches, left to right: the Flame Lily (I lied - this one was in the UAE still), Empress Marie Feodorovna's Sapphire worn unusually without the pearl pendant (now we're in Oman), the Small Pink and Diamond, Queen Victoria's Wheat-Ear Brooches, the Frosted Sunflower (and a Sgt. Pepper outfit, because obviously), and the Cullinan V.

In Oman they also had a non-tiara event as the state banquet. The Queen wore Queen Victoria's Crown Ruby Necklace and Earrings (my favorite of all her rubies, yum), the Art Deco Diamond and Ruby Bracelet, the same diamond evening watch as before, and the Irish Blossom Brooch. The brooch is kind of a strange edition to the outfit - over on its proper entry, you can see some discussion in the comments on whether it might be tied to Oman somehow. Or maybe it's just a regular mismatch...
The gold vase the Queen's admiring there is one of her gifts from the Sultan; the other gift he gave her was a Fabergé-style musical egg. We've covered several jewels on the blog that were gifts she picked up on her 1979 swing through the region, but this modern shorter visit was not so profitable for the jewel vault.

Photos: WAM/Getty Images/Bauer Griffin/PA/Pool