I am closing with my last little bits. These items were not in the Catalog but the Hofdames suggested one last treasure-trove chapter. So, in no particular order, here are my tidbits!
Many of us know about the lost Yusupov Sun tiara worn by Princess Irina. Fortunately, while in Monaco during 2019 I viewed the Chaumet exhibit there and they had an amazing hologram recreation of that tiara. I have photos of the hologram with its information plaque.
To continue with the Yusupovs, after the revolution in exile, in Paris at the end of his life, Prince Yusupov hand-colored these monochrome images so that future family members would know what was once theirs. Here are his sapphires.
Prince Michael of Greece published Crown Jewels of Europe in 1983 that has the black and white photo of an emerald engraved with the portrait of Catherine the Great. This square emerald was sold by Christie’s Geneva. The backstory goes something like this – Prince Orloff gave Catherine the diamond that bears his name which was placed in the Scepter. She, in turn, gave him this 19.40-carat square emerald engraved with her profile, surrounded by diamonds. Considering that engraving an emerald is a delicate process its very gratifying that it was completed successfully without shattering the emerald. But the truly interesting fact is that there is a twin. This color photo shows Catherine II in profile, circled by diamonds, and mounted in gold. This oval shaped emerald is held in the Diamond Fund, exhibited in the Kremlin Armoury in Moscow, Russia.
We should ask Queen Margrethe to wear this lovely brooch that she has in the Danish Royal Vault. It’s a commemorative brooch from the coronation of Emperor Alexander III and Empress Maria Feodorovna that was given to the Danish Queen Louise, Alexander III’s mother-in-law.
And finally, we have an exceptional ruby and diamond tiara and necklace by Bolin from Emperor Alexander II to his daughter Maria Alexandrovna when she married Queen Victoria’s son Alfred, Duke of Edinburgh in 1874. She and Alfred became the Grand Duke and Grand Duchess of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha. This was sold by Christie’s Geneva in 1978.
In closing, this has been a fantastical journey and interesting daydream that I have been honored to share with you all. If you’re travelling to Moscow then go to the Kremlin and tell us all about the Diamond Fund as I’m sure we’d all love to hear about it http://www.gokhran.ru/en/diamond-fund/index.phtml .
My sincere thanks to the Hofdames for not losing their patience with me in finishing these articles.