Twenty-five years after the Queen’s accession to the throne, she celebrated her Silver Jubilee while wearing a remarkable diamond jewel—which she would later also wear for a pair of family weddings.
Queen Elizabeth II marked 25 years on the throne in February 1977. That June, major celebrations were held in London, including a special service of thanksgiving at St. Paul’s Cathedral in London.
Here, the Queen arrives for the service on June 7, 1977, wearing a pink silk crepe and chiffon creation by Sir Hardy Amies. The dress and coat, along with a matching hat, are currently on display at the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh, part of this year’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations.
With the pink dress, she wore a spectacular pink diamond. The gem, set in the center of the Williamson Pink Diamond Brooch, was one of her wedding gifts in 1947.
Here’s a closer look at the brooch. The diamond was given to the Queen by Canadian geologist John Thoburn Williamson, who owned the mine where it was discovered. Elizabeth and her grandmother, Queen Mary, supervised the process of having the diamond cut and mounted in a suitable piece of jewelry. The resulting diamond and platinum brooch, made in London by Cartier, was finished in 1953, and it quickly became one of the Queen’s favorite pieces for important events.
The brooch was a sparkling ornament suitable for a jubilee celebration. For the 1977 jubilee service, the Queen paired it with diamond and pearl drop earrings (now worn by the Princess of Wales) and a two-stranded pearl necklace (the Hanoverian Pearls, I think).
Four years later, she wore the brooch and another double strand of pearls for another important family milestone: the wedding of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer.
She pinned the Williamson Brooch to a sky blue dress for the wedding festivities.
And in June 1999, she wore the brooch again for the wedding of her youngest son, Prince Edward, to Sophie Rhys-Jones.