Banned portrait of Queen with long neck is back ... after 61 years
The Queen in 1952 ... in real life, left, and as seen by artist John Napper.
There were many thumbs-down grades for the official Kate Middleton portrait, but that was nothing compared a Queen Elizabeth portrait in 1952.
Back then, the painting by John Napper was considered so embarrassing that it was almost immediately removed from public viewing in Liverpool and banished to a vault.
Now, 61 years later, it is seeing the light of day once more as a tribute to the Queen's Diamond Jubilee year.
The painting, which had been commissioned for the Queen's coronation, will hang in the city's historic St. George's Hall, though it's doubtful opinions on the will have changed much since its unveiling.
Even the artist was not enamoured with his work, once declaring that it's "a beautiful painting of a queen, but not this Queen."
The neck, clearly, is much too long. Napper later painted a second portrait of the monarch, which was accepted by the local politicians and still hangs in the town hall. Napper died in 2001 at age 84."I remember the painting well," his wife Pauline told the Telegraph. "He was disappointed with the angle at which he painted it, he only had one sitting.
"I was due to be hung up high so that you would look at it from below. If you looked at it from that angle it looked normal. Then when they showed it they didn’t put it up high and then it didn’t look like the Queen."
Today, the city's politicians -- after very long, sober second thought -- have decided there is merit to the portrait being among the first to commemorate Elizabeth as Queen, and are "very proud" to take it out of mothballs.
KATE TRIES FOOD-FRIENDLY HYPNOSIS
Jessica Hay -- one of the few Kate acquaintances who spills details of her life -- told Australia's 'New Idea' magazine that the duchess still "feels nauseous" at the sight of food.
"She's been plagued with that feeling you have when you've had food poisoning and your stomach's shrunk," Hay told the magazine.
The solution? Hypnotherapy.
"The hypnotherapy is taking away any negative thoughts connected with food from the morning sickness, and replacing them with cravings for healthy, nutritious food," said Hay.
While keeping her stomach at peace, Kate is also exercising, keeping up with Pilates sessons three times a week.
PRINCE HARRY ON SHORT LIST
Prince Harry hasn't yet stepped back on British soil, but already there is talk that he'll be returning to the field of battle with UK troops abroad.
Of course, it's also likely it won't be to Afghanistan, where the 28-year-old Apache helicopter pilot is finishing off his four-month tour of duty. Britain is due to pull out 4,000 troops this year and be out of the country entirely in 2014.
A British Ministry of Defence official told the Daily Star that the prince has been "earmarked for a possible recall."
"Veterans like Harry know their stuff and are sure to be called on again," the Star quotes the spokesman.
It was also noted, however, that it would be a minimum of 16 months before Harry's Apache squadron would be rotated back into action.
In the meantime, once Harry gets back on home turf, he can continue his pursuit for Mrs. Right. Cressida Bonas has remained at the top of his date book since he left for Afghanistan, the relationship seemingly having survived Harry's infamous naked romp in Las Vegas.
His list of unattached former girlfriends is rapidly depleting. Long-time love interest Chelsy Davy was pictured over the weekend with her boyfriend of four months, Matthew Mills, in South Africa. The match, according to reports, is in full bloom. And Florence Brudenell-Bruce, who had a summer fling with the prince, is now engaged to one of her other former boyfriends, Henry St. George.
WILLIAM MAKES PLEA FOR DONATIONS
Prince William is adding his muscle behind a fundraising campaign for the Royal Marsden Hospital in London.
William has been president of the hospital since 2007, picking up the torch left by his mother Diana, who had been patron of the hospital until her death in 1997. In a video message (below), he extols the merits of its cancer research as the hospital embarks on a campaign to raise $160 million over the next 10 years to continue its work.
The prince and Kate and were at the hospital in September 2011 to open its cancer clinic for children.