Monday, April 19, 2010

'It's Good To Be QUEEN'

I have always been fascinated by English royalty. Maybe it's because
of the direct line of lineage that goes back beyond what I could ever
imagine. Maybe it's because my maiden name Brewer, can be traced
back to Old English roots. Maybe it's because the history of the royals
is filled with intrigue, marrying cousins, hemophilia & beheadings
or maybe it's just because of the
Crown Jewels!

Queen Victoria was born Alexandrina Victoria on May 24, 1819.
At the tender age of 18 years old, she became the Queen of England
& on that day she inherited the Crown Jewels. Victoria loved
diamonds & in 1857 she commissioned this amazing Collet necklace
& earrings. The necklace consists of twenty-nine collet diamonds adding
up to a weight of over 160 carats of diamonds. The necklace contains
a famous stone as the pendant named the Lahore Diamond which weights
22.48 carats. The earrings are of typical design, large brilliant followed
by a smaller one, with a large pear shaped drop... OMG!

She is wearing them in both of the photographs above...
can you even imagine?

Queen Victoria bequeathed these jewels to the Crown in her will.
Queen Alexandra and Queen Mary wore the necklace at their
Coronations in 1901 and 1911 & Queen Elizabeth (the Queen Mother)
wore both necklace and earrings in 1937, as did her daughter
Queen Elizabeth II at her Coronation in 1953.

Queen Alexandra is seen here with her 2 daughters, wearing the
Collet necklace... but with all that bling I have to use a magnifying
glass to find it. A top her regal head sits the George IV State
Diadem Crown made in 1820 for his Coronation.

100 years later or so, here it is on Her Majesty the Queen.
{can you see Queen Victoria's Collet necklace peeking out from under
her stole & yes, those are the matching earrings}

The King George IV State Diadem Crown in all it's stunning Glory!
The diadem includes 1333 diamonds weighing 325.75
carats with 169 pearls along its base.

And last, but most certainly not least, the Vladimir Tiara.
Bought by Queen Mary from the Grand Duchess Vladimir of Russia,
the Aunt to the last Russian Tsar Nicholas II, after her exile.

{Did you know that Queen Victoria was the Grandmother of Alexandra,
wife to Nicholas II whose family was murdered by Bolsheviks in 1918?}

And now we've come full circle as the Vladimir Tiara rests gently a top
the current sovereign's royal head. I didn't mean for this to turn into a
history lesson, but I did tell you I find it all sooooo fascinating!!!

So, what's the moral of this story you may ask?
Sometimes it's Good to be Queen, look at all the awesome jewels
you get to wear! But, maybe we should ask the wives of Henry the VIII
what they thought before we jump to that conclusion.