08 June 2019

Royal Jewel Rewind: Trooping the Colour 1999

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For a little fun before today's Trooping the Colour festivities, we've got a trip in our bejeweled time machine. Here's a look at the jewels of Trooping the Colour twenty years ago, in June 1999.




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By 1999, the Queen had given up riding in her annual birthday parade, and had begun taking part in the carriage procession.


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On her sunny yellow outfit, she pinned the brooch she has almost always worn for Trooping the Colour: the Guards' Brooch. The diamond brooch features the badges of the five Household regiments (the Coldstream Guards, the Grenadier Guards, the Irish Guards, the Scots Guards, and the Welsh Guards) surmounted by a crown. The piece was likely made from a pendant given to the Queen's aunt, Princess Mary, in 1922. (More about the brooch here!)


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The Queen Mother, pictured here with the Prince of Wales, was still a fixture on the royal scene in 1999. She was only a few weeks away from celebrating her 99th birthday!


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She wore Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee Brooch for Trooping the Colour in 1999, pairing it with her diamond floral earrings and pearls. The diamond and pearl brooch was a present from the members of Queen Victoria's household in honor of her Diamond Jubilee in 1897. It's an Heirloom of the Crown, which means that it should have passed to the Queen in 1952, but the Queen Mother continued to wear it until her death in 2002. The Queen now wears it occasionally.


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The newest member of the royal family rode in the Queen Mother's carriage in 1999: Sophie Rhys-Jones, the fiancee of Prince Edward. (He was also in the carriage, top hat in hand.) Sophie and Edward were married exactly one week after Trooping the Colour, in a Garter-themed ceremony at St. George's Chapel, Windsor Castle. For her first Trooping ceremonies, Sophie kept things simple, wearing small stud earrings and a teeny pendant necklace.


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The Princess Royal was in full dress uniform to ride in the procession, as per usual. You'll note that she wears the insignia of the Order of the Garter with her uniform; she received that honor in 1994.


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The gathering on the balcony looked pretty different in 1999 than it will later today! From left to right here, we've got the Duke of Kent, Sophie Rhys-Jones (now Countess of Wessex), Prince Edward (now Earl of Wessex), Sir Timothy Laurence, the Princess Royal, and the Queen.


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And here, the bride and groom are still front and center with another royal grouping. From left to right, we've got the Queen Mother, the 8th Duke of Wellington, Sir Angus Ogilvy, Sophie, the Earl of St. Andrews (obscured), Edward, little Lady Amelia Windsor, the Duchess of Kent, and (I believe) Sophie's mother, Mary Rhys-Jones.