A pair of tiaras with fascinating royal histories are coincidentally being offered for sale at the same time by Sotheby’s and Christie’s in Geneva. While it is rare whenever such important historical jewels come to auction, the fact that both tiaras are by Fabergé and were made just one year apart has caused quite a stir in the jewellery world.
This diamond tiara from 1903 was created as a wedding gift
The first tiara will appear at Sotheby’s on 14th May, and is a diamond design from 1903 attributed to Fabergé. It was created for Duchess Cecilie von Mecklenburg-Schwerin, the last Crown Princess of Prussia, and given to her by her Russian relatives on the occasion of her wedding to Crown Prince Wilhelm. The tiara will be offered with an estimate of US$ 200,000 – 300,000 (Dhs 734,630 – 1,101,945).
Speaking about the tiara’s provenance, Daniela Mascetti, Sotheby’s Jewellery Chairman, Europe, says, “As we saw last November with Marie Antoinette’s pearl, historic jewels have the power to transport us back to a moment in time. The tiara attributed to Fabergé is another perfect example: its Kokoshnik design reflects Crown Princess Cecilie’s Russian family, and from portraits we can see that she paired the tiara with her gowns in a very fashion-forward way for the very early 1900s."
A rare aquamarine and diamond tiara, Fabergé, 1904, estimate US$ 230,000–340,000, Christie's Geneva
If you miss out on this tiara, however, then the second is up for sale at Christie’s Geneva the very next day. Also by Fabergé and dating from 1904, this piece is set with aquamarines and diamonds in a design of forget-me-not flowers tied with ribbon bows and pierced with cupid’s arrows. Its symbolism of love made it the ideal wedding gift from Frederick Francis IV, Grand Duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin, to his bride Princess Alexandra of Hanover and Cumberland, and carries an estimate of US$ 230,000-340,000 (Dhs 844,824 – 1,248,871).
It seems that, finally, the tiara is making a long overdue comeback.