Sunday, February 17, 2013

British Royal Jewels: Even Fringe Diamond Necklace

The provenance of this necklace with rather unimaginative name is completely unknown. Although unlike the other four necklaces in this series, we can be almost certain it has no Middle Eastern/Arabic origin.
Even Fringe Diamond Necklace
The reason I am so categorical is fairly straightforward; as I mentioned earlier, the Queen usually debuts jewels presented to her during receptions hosted in honour of the donor. Despite the fact this necklace has become one of Her Majesty’s most favourite and most often-worn pieces, it has never, not once, been worn to an event even remotely connected to Middle East.

The front half of the necklace consists of 18 fringes. 14 of them are of equal length (hence the name) and consist of a base of four brilliants in cross formation from which a marquise-shaped diamond hangs. The diamond supports a trio of small brilliants, which itself supports a large pear-shaped pendant. The 4 fringes at either end just have the cross formation with no pendants suspended from them. 
The Queen wearing the Even Fringe Necklace without tiara (left) and with Grand Duchess Vladimir Tiara (middle and right)
This necklace often gets confused with the other three necklaces in Her Majesty’s possession, especially the King Khalid necklace which it does look very similar to. The main differences are at the base (the base of this necklace has 4 brilliants in a cross setting, whereas the Khalid Necklace has a 3 brilliants in a triangle setting) and the length of fringes. The second difference is the most easily distinguishable one: the fringes of this necklace are even (bar from the four at either end), while the fringes of King Khalid Necklace alternate between long and shorter ones. 

The Queen started wearing this necklace in early 2000s. The first known occasions were a state dinner in honour of State Visit from the United States (in November of 2003). Since then, Her Majesty has worn the necklace on many occasions, including banquet hosted by the Polish President (2004), State Visit to Germany (2004), State Visit from Italy (2005), State Visit to Singapore (2006), State Visit to Lithuania (2006), historic visit to Ireland (2011), and quite a few occasions in-between and after. 
The Queen wearing the Even Fringe Necklace with Girls of Great Britain and Ireland Tiara
Of the four necklaces in the Queen’s possession, this is probably the most often-worn one along with King Fahd one. I am not sure I see the attraction though; it’s nice and I would certainly not say not to it if were offered to me, but Queen Elizabeth has much nicer necklaces including the other necklaces we have discussed.

Have a look at the other four necklaces in this series:
King Fahd Diamond Necklace
King Faisal Diamond Necklace

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