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Christie’s auctions Thatcher handbag for celebrity charity ;

June 27, 2011 - LONDON

Christie's auctions the handbag famously wielded by Margaret Thatcher as a symbol of her authority, as a portfolio for state papers and to silence dissent during her 11 years as British prime minister. It is expected to fetch some UK £100,000 (US $167,000) because of its historic significance during the Cold War. The auction represents an intended or unintended promotion for a movie about the so-called Iron Lady, which is due for release in late 2011.The term "handbagging" entered the political lexicon as a reference to her manner of disciplining errant Tory backbenchers and ministers during her years in Downing Street, according to the Guardian newspaper. She carried the black Asprey bag on many state trips, and it was with her during the Cold War negotiations with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev and United States president Ronald Reagan.

Christie's auctions the handbag famously wielded by Margaret Thatcher as a symbol of her authority, as a portfolio for state papers and to silence dissent during her 11 years as British prime minister. It is expected to fetch some UK £100,000 (US $167,000) because of its historic significance during the Cold War. The auction represents an intended or unintended promotion for a movie about the so-called Iron Lady, which is due for release in late 2011. The term "handbagging" entered the political lexicon as a reference to her manner of disciplining errant Tory backbenchers and ministers during her years in Downing Street, according to the Guardian newspaper. She carried the black Asprey bag on many state trips, and it was with her during the Cold War negotiations with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev and United States president Ronald Reagan. The Iron Lady nickname arose from her hard line against trade unions and tough rhetoric in opposition to the Soviet Union. Set in the build-up to the 1982 Falklands War, the movie, The Iron Lady, stars American actress Meryl Streep as Thatcher. Now Baroness Thatcher, she donated the bag for a celebrity charity auction. Another bag owned by the former prime minister - a black Salvatore Ferragamo purse - fetched £82,110 (US $137,152) for charity in 2000. (Written Apr 2011)

Margaret Thatcher's handbag to be auctioned for charity (Guardian 24 Apr 2011)

Iron Lady? Not quite, Mrs Thatcher sang Abba's greatest hits to me (Daily Mail 29 Apr 2011)

Date written/update: 2011-06-27