Cross Dressing

Mary Queen of Scots – another female ruler – was another who used clothes as symbols. On the morning of her execution, spectators gasped as she threw off her black dress to reveal a petticoat of tawny red – the colour of dried blood, and of Catholic martyrdom. It may be a tad less dramatic, but Hillary Clinton’s charm bracelet, containing a picture of her granddaughter, conveys a message just as clearly: ‘I’m a warm family woman. Honestly!’ When Angela Merkel debated with a rival before her last election, her necklace, in the colours of the German flag, got better reviews than any of the speeches. And that’s even before we’ve got on to Theresa May.

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