19 May 2020

Tournament of Brooches: Marie Feodorovna's Sapphire vs Queen Victoria's Bows


Will it be the Romanov bauble or the Victorian brooches?



PATRICK RIVIERE/AFP via Getty Images, ALASTAIR GRANT/AFP via Getty Images

Empress Marie Feodorovna's Sapphire Brooch vs. Queen Victoria's Diamond Bow Brooches


PATRICK RIVIERE/AFP via Getty Images


This classic cabochon sapphire and diamond cluster brooch, which has a distinctive pear-shaped pearl pendant drop, was owned by Empress Marie Feodorovna of Russia. She received it in 1866 as a wedding present from her sister and brother-in-law, King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra of the United Kingdom. Queen Mary purchased the brooch from the empress's estate in 1929, and the Queen inherited it in 1953. She wears it occasionally, both with and without the pearl pendant.


ALASTAIR GRANT/AFP via Getty Images


Queen Victoria had this trio of diamond bow brooches made in 1858 to replace pieces lost in the Hanoverian Claim. She designated the bows as heirlooms of the crown, and since then, they've been worn for coronations, Christmas broadcasts, and other important occasions.




A fascinating royal necklace is coming your way tonight, and then more brooches tomorrow!