The Queen was back in action recently with a visit to a British naval base, and she brought along an appropriate—and quite sentimental—piece of jewelry for the engagement.
On Saturday, the Queen headed to Portsmouth, where she visited HM Naval Base, Portsmouth, the oldest operating base of the Royal Navy. The Queen has recently begun appearing in public again following the relaxation of lockdown guidelines and the mourning period for the late Duke of Edinburgh. This event came on the heels of her appearance at the State Opening of Parliament earlier this month.
During her visit to the naval base in Portsmouth, the Queen signed the visitor’s guestbook and chatted with military personnel. She also toured the aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth, which began its maiden operational deployment to the Philippine Sea the following day.
As the daughter, wife, and mother of naval officers, the Queen would have had little difficulty finding topics for conversation during her visit to the base. The late Duke of Edinburgh was a decorated naval officer who was recognized for his heroic actions aboard HMS Valiant during World War II.
The Queen has put away her all-black mourning attire in recent weeks, but the jewelry she wore to the naval base was certainly a nod to her late husband.
With her usual daytime pearls, the Queen wore the Grima Ruby Brooch. Prince Philip acquired the brooch from Andrew Grima for the Queen in 1966. Philip had been introduced to the jeweler’s work the same year when Grima became the only jeweler ever to win the Duke of Edinburgh’s Prize for Elegant Design. This particular Grima piece, made of gold set with diamonds and carved rubies, was inspired by Egyptian scarabs. Grima also made jewelry for Princess Margaret and Princess Anne, and in 1976, he designed a special commission for the Queen: a bicentennial gift for President and Mrs. Ford.
The brooch was the perfect way to remember the late Duke during an engagement that would have been deeply interesting to him.