What Queen Elizabeth really thought of Marilyn Monroe after meeting her in 1956

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Marilyn Monroe meets Queen Elizabeth II at the Royal Command Film Performance at Leicester Square in London on 29 October 1956.
Marilyn Monroe meets Queen Elizabeth II at the Royal Command Film Performance at Leicester Square in London on 29 October 1956.
Photo: Daily Herald/Mirrorpix/Getty Images
  • Author, Michelle Morgan, explores Queen Elizabeth and Marilyn Monroe's face-to-face encounter in her new book.
  • Monroe's fascination with the royal family is reported to have intensified family throughout her four-month stay in the UK in 1956.
  • The pair finally met the Royal Command Performance in October of that year.


Queen Elizabeth has met countless important figures during her 70-year reign, but one of her most starry encounters was when she met Marilyn Monroe.

Author, Michelle Morgan, explores the face-to-face meeting in the new book When Marilyn Met the Queen.

According to Morgan, Monroe's fascination with the royal family grew throughout her four-month stay in Englefield Green, just four miles from Windsor Castle, in 1956.

"Her dream was to have tea at Buckingham Palace, and publicist Alan Arnold found the request on his daily to-do list," she writes, per People.

Monroe spent four months in the UK alongside her new husband Arthur Miller to shoot her film, The Prince and the Showgirl, co-starring Sir Laurence Olivier.

While her dream of sipping tea and sharing cucumber sandwiches with the monarch never came true, Monroe did get to meet Queen Elizabeth when she was invited to attend the Royal Command Performance at the Empire Theatre in London's Leicester Square on 29 October.

An excerpt published by Town & Country shares the story of the night the Queen of England met the Queen of Hollywood.

The line was long, and Marilyn was more than halfway down. At times the actor stared ahead, nervously waiting her turn, but as the queen moved closer, Marilyn could be seen peeping out and then excitedly chattering to actor Victor Mature. As the queen shook hands with the stars, Reginald Bromhead discreetly glanced at his notes to make sure he named each celebrity correctly. And then it was Marilyn's turn. As the queen gave her a brief look up and down, the actor took Her Majesty's hand and then descended into a well-practised curtsy. The two then chatted for several minutes and covered subjects including being neighbours and the queen's beloved Windsor.

According to Morgan's biography, Monroe told reporters what she thought of the queen later that evening.

"The queen is very warm-hearted. She radiates sweetness. She asked how I liked living in Windsor, and I said, 'What!' And she said that as I lived in Englefield Green, near Windsor, we were neighbours. So, I told her that Arthur and I went on bicycle rides in the park."

An article that appeared in a UK magazine five years later detailed Her Majesty's thoughts on the Hollywood star.

Per People, the article said that the queen became fascinated with Monroe.

"I thought Miss Monroe was a very sweet person. But I felt sorry for her because she was so nervous that she had licked all of her lipstick off," the monarch reportedly told an unnamed "friend".

SEE PHOTOS OF THE MOMENT HERE:

Marilyn Monroe meets Queen Elizabeth II at the Roy
Marilyn Monroe meets Queen Elizabeth II at the Royal Command Film Performance at Leicester Square in London on 29 October 1956.
Marilyn Monroe meets Queen Elizabeth II at the Roy
Marilyn Monroe meets Queen Elizabeth II at the Royal Command Film Performance at Leicester Square in London on 29 October 1956.

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