4th 2009
Gigantic Americans tower over shrunken British royal family!

Posted under: American history, European history, fluff

AP Photo

AP Photo

This was a great photo from the Obamas’ barnstorming of Europe this week.  I like this photo (found here) because of the contrasts on display:  the Obamas are tall and youngish and have gorgeous smiles, but they absolutely tower over a timid and fragile-looking Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip.


12 Responses to “Gigantic Americans tower over shrunken British royal family!”

  1. Rose on 04 Apr 2009 at 11:40 am #

    Y’know, I’ve seen this photo several times over the last few days, but this is the first time I’ve seen it uncropped–I had no idea Price Philip was even in the shot! There’s an interesting historical artifact for you, Historiann–in this case, no one apparently gives a shit about the old white guy.

  2. Lilian Nattel on 04 Apr 2009 at 11:40 am #

    Yes–but then remember all that they’ve (the British) lived through and that the queen-mother died at age 100 or so fairly recently. Small but enduring.

  3. Janice on 04 Apr 2009 at 12:38 pm #

    Though, in their day, Elizabeth and Philip were both the picture of fitness and verve, both accomplished equestrians and hardy outdoors-types. Time is merciless!

  4. Stephen on 04 Apr 2009 at 12:40 pm #

    I do hope I’m not detecting some form of nationalistic jeering here! The Obamas are young, athletic, handsome and riding on a wave of popular adoration. The Windsors have a combined age of 1,563; get most of their exercise through waving (in the Queen’s case) and finding Asian people to make ill-advised comments about (in Philip’s case); are fairly striking for products of centuries of in-breeding; and are regarded with a mixture of disdain, bemusement and outright hatred by the British public. Gordon and Sarah Brown would match up to the Yanks a little better — Gordon used to play rugby, after all!

  5. GayProf on 04 Apr 2009 at 1:31 pm #

    Don’t let the Queen’s diminutive stature fool you — She’ll cut you if you get in her way.

  6. Digger on 04 Apr 2009 at 1:43 pm #

    What GayProf said. Her Majesty is pure steel.

  7. Historiann on 04 Apr 2009 at 1:46 pm #

    No nationalism, and I believe you about HM EII. My point was more the contrast, plus Janice’s point about time, the avenger.

  8. Mamie on 04 Apr 2009 at 5:11 pm #

    Hmm. According to their bios, Barack Obama is 6’1.5″ and Prince Phillip is 6’2″. Is the camera playing tricks? How far back is Phillip standing?

  9. Erica on 04 Apr 2009 at 5:49 pm #

    @Rose — I laughed quite hard at that. Prince Phillip NEVER gets noticed.

    @Mamie — Even if he’s standing far enough back from Pres. Obama that perspective is confusing Prince Phillip’s height, he’s standing almost right next to Mrs. Obama and looks shorter than her! I think he may actually be bending over slightly, sort of a “am I supposed to be getting into this picture” pose. One leg’s further forward than the other, like he’s walking/edging forward.

    The Queen, however, is just short :)

  10. Indyanna on 04 Apr 2009 at 6:28 pm #

    This was understood as far back as the Seven Years War. Those maize-eating colonials shot up like rockets, while their metropolitan cousins shriveled away like grasshoppers. George Washington in his ’40s could dominate a room, whereas his only slightly-older Revolutionary adversaries were already hunching over. I think F.J. Turner said something about this…

  11. Susan on 04 Apr 2009 at 9:56 pm #

    It can’t just be camera angles, can it? But this is indeed a very funny picture!

  12. hysperia on 07 Apr 2009 at 10:00 pm #

    Well they’re OLD. That point has already been made, but, they’re OLD.

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