LONDON — Her majesty would not be amused. A pair of Queen Victoria's bloomers, with a 50-inch waist, were snapped up for $9,000 by a Canadian buyer at a central England auction Wednesday.
Auctioneer Charles Hanson said Queen Victoria's underpants belonged to "a very big lady of quite small stature with a very wide girth." She was said to be 5 feet (1.52 meters) tall.
The handmade knickers _ which date back to the 1890s _ bear the monogram "VR" for Victoria Regina. They are open-crotch style, with separate legs joined by a drawstring at the waist, a popular style in the late Victorian era.
The royal drawers belonged to a family in western England whose ancestor was a lady-in-waiting for the queen.
"These pants, considering their provenance and pedigree, are very exciting," Hanson said. "They are monogrammed and crested and we know that they are hers."
Also up for auction was Queen Victoria's chemise, with a 66-inch bust, sold for $8,000. Her nightgown sold for $11,000.
Before the auction, Hanson valued the underwear at $1,000, while the chemise and nightgown were valued at $600 each.
Queen Victoria lived from 1819 to 1901. She became queen at age 18 and was the U.K.'s longest-reigning monarch. Her reign is noted for both imperial expansion and the decreasing political power of the monarch.