Sunday, February 10, 2013

Italian Royal Jewels: Queen Margherita of Savoy's Emerald Brooch

Margherita of Savoy had an expert’s eye for jewellery and thanks to her generous husband, that passion thrived.
Emerald, Diamond and Pearl Brooch
King Umberto I gave this wonderful emerald brooch as a gift to his wife in 1879. It was meant to compliment the rest of her emerald parure and so was made in the same design. It consisted of a single large emerald set in a setting of smaller emeralds and diamonds. A large pearl drop hangs from the centre of the frame, with two smaller diamond drops on either side.

Queen Margherita wearing the brooch with the emerald necklace from Emerald Parure
The Queen wore occasionally wore it both on its own and together with other elements of the parure. Most often, she paired it with her pearl earrings which complimented both sets nicely. This was one of the pieces she gave to her daughter-in-law, Elena of Montenegro who also occasionally wore it with other pieces of the Emerald Parue. 

The brooch remained with the House of Savoy until it was sold in an auction in 1971 for $130,000 – considerably higher than its estimate.

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