Cullinan V was one among the Cullinan diamonds given to Queen Mary by the Government and People of South Africa in memory of the Inauguration of the Union in June 1910.
|Cullinan V Brooch (The Heat-Shaped Diamond Brooch)|
The unusual heart-shaped stone is the sixth of the numbered stones from the great Cullinan diamond. It weighs 18.8 carats and is mounted in a fine radiating platinum web, in symmetrically scrolling and foliate millegrain and pavé-set brilliant border.
|Queen Mary wearing Cullinan V Brooch in the Delhi Durbar Stomacher (left), with Cullinan VIII Brooch (middle), and in her Coronet (right) |
The brooch was designed as a versatile piece to be used in a number of ways. The most common usage is of course as a brooch although Queen Mary very rarely wore it just on its own. The brooch could also be used as the detachable centre of the Delhi Durbar stomacher, suspended from the Cullinan VIII Brooch
, or in the Honeysuckle Tiara (now property of the Duchess of Gloucester).
|The Delhi Durbar Stomacher with Cullinan V in the middle|
At least once, Queen Mary also had Cullinan V placed in her Coronet instead of the Koh-i-Noor which had been used by Queen Elizabeth (The Queen Mother) for her own Crown. One of the rare occasions Mary wore the brooch on its own was in 1911, abroad ship as she travelled to India for the Delhi Durbar. A far more interesting placing was during 1935 Silver Jubilee Service in St Paul’s Cathedral, when the , on her hat Queen wore it on her hat. She also wore Cullinan V with Cullinan VII
and Cullinan VIII
attached to it in a brooch form in 1926.
|The Queen wearing Cullinan V Brooch for Prince Andrew's christening in 1960 (left), in Tuvalu in 1982 (middle), and to Royal Ascot in 2009 (right)|
After Queen Mary’s death in 1953, the brooch was part of the vast jewellery collection inherited by her granddaughter, Queen Elizabeth. This is by far the Queen’s favourite among the Cullinan diamonds and she has worn it quite often throughout her reign.
To read more about the fascinating story of the uncut diamond, have a look at this article - Day in History: The world’s largest diamond ever, the Cullinan, is found.
Sources and photo credits: Royal Collection, “Diamond: A Journey to the Heart of an Obsession” by Matthew Hart, “The Queen’s Diamonds” by Hugh Roberts, "The Queen's Jewels" by Leslie Field
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