When Carolyn Harris gets married next month, she doesn’t expect her guests to turn a profit from her wedding cake.
"That only tends to happen with royalty," the royal historian said.
Fans of all-things-aristocratic are now bidding on an edible piece of modern history — a chunk of cake offered up during the royal wedding of Kate and William.
While the slice is a year old — one of 650 given out at Buckingham Palace after the ceremony — it seems to be aging well. Bids are now around $2,500, with another two weeks to go before the end of the auction.
The seller’s identity is unknown, though it’s not likely someone from within the Royal Family.
But before your turn up a stiff upper lip at the thought of a guest making a pound — or a few thousand — on a sentimental keepsake, Harris notes there’s long been a market for royal memorabilia.
The sale of commemorative noble knick-knacks goes back to the 16th century, and there’s a telltale trail of crumbs leading back to other majestic baked goods.
"Royal cakes are often steeped in symbolism," said Harris (royalhistorian.com), a teaching fellow at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ont.
She points out a tier of Princess Patricia’s 1919 wedding cake was shipped over to her regiment in Canada.
It’s not known if it was eaten by hungry troops or saved.
When Queen Elizabeth married The Duke of Edinburgh in 1947, post-war food rationing meant ingredients for their cake were sent as wedding presents from overseas — Canadian wheat has been used in other royal confections — and pieces of the imperial pastry were handed out to school children.
A section of Charles and Diana’s cake fetched more than $29,000 by a collector and earlier this year, one of those cellophane-wrapped slices from the Queen’s wedding — found in a filing cabinet — sold for around $1,800.
Kylie Whitehead, a spokesman for PFC Auctions — an online company selling the latest piece of royal dessert — says the slice will likely only increase in value as it ages.
And don’t worry about it looking like the muffin you forgot in your desk drawer when you left on last summer’s vacation.
Fruitcake can last for years without spoiling, points out Whitehead, whose auction house is also selling Princess Diana’s childhood record collection.
Which means some — including a Canadian — can simply buy and eat it.
Though you can’t have your royal cake and make a King’s ransom from it too.
Source : https://torontosun.com/2012/05/10/slice-of-royalty-on-the-auction-block/wcm/b8ac063d-96f0-4af1-a17c-dde72aa5bc06