Take a peek inside Queen Elizabeth’s personal jewellery box

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In celebration of Queen Elizabeth’s historic Platinum Jubilee in 2022, the staterooms at Buckingham Palace will feature a display looking at the Queen’s accession to the throne in February 1952, with many of her personal jewellery items taking center stage.

Queen Elizabeth’s personal jewellery items

On 6 February 2022, Queen Elizabeth II became the first British monarch to celebrate a Platinum Jubilee. In celebration of this, Buckingham Palace revealed details of various events that are set to take place in 2022.

The deputy surveyor of the Queen’s Works of Arts, Caroline de Guitaut, said that the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee will also be marked with a series of exhibitions.

At Buckingham Palace, the display will focus on the Queen’s succession in 1952 through a display of iconic portraits and personal jewellery.

According to the Royal Collection Trust, examples from the remarkable series of portraits taken by Dorothy Wilding, which formed the basis of the Queen’s image on stamps and in British embassies across the world until 1971, will be on display.

The first official photographic sitting with the new Queen was granted to the society photographer Dorothy Wilding. It took place on 26 February 1952, just twenty days after the accession, followed by a second sitting on 15 April. Image: Royal Collection Trust

Also featured will be The Girls of Great Britain and Ireland Tiara, which was a wedding gift to Princess Victoria Mary of Teck, later Queen Mary, on the occasion of her marriage to the future King George V in 1893. 

Queen Elizabeth wears The Girls of Great Britain and Ireland Tiara, the Greville Chandelier Earrings, the George VI Festoon Necklace, and the True Lover’s Knot brooch on 25 May 1983. Image: John Shelley Collection/Avalon/Getty Images.

The diamond tiara was made by E. Wolff & Co for R & S. Garrard in a scrolled and pierced foliate form. Queen Mary gave the tiara to her granddaughter, Princess Elizabeth, as a wedding present on the occasion of her marriage to Prince Philip on 20 November 1947.

The Queen’s Delhi Durbar necklace and Cullinan VII pendant will also go on display.

The spectacular Delhi Durbar necklace incorporates nine emeralds originally owned by Queen Mary’s grandmother, the Duchess of Cambridge, as well as an 8.8-carat diamond pendant cut from the Cullinan diamond found in South Africa. The necklace was made for Queen Mary as part of a suite of jewellery created for the Delhi Durbar in 1911. 

Caroline de Guitaut, Curator of Royal Collections, holds the Cullinan III and IV Broach and the Cullinan VII Delhi Durbar necklace and Cullinan Pendant. Image: Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images.

The Diamond Diadem, on the other hand, was created for the famously extravagant coronation of George IV in 1821 and will also go on display.

It is set with 1,333 brilliant-cut diamonds and consists of a band with two rows of pearls on either side of a row of diamonds, above which are diamonds set in the form of a rose, a thistle and two shamrocks, the national emblems of England, Scotland and Ireland.

The Diadem was inherited in 1837 by Queen Victoria, who was frequently painted and photographed wearing it, including on several early postage stamps such as the Penny Black.

Queen Elizabeth II wearing the Diamond Diadem made for King George IV by Rundell, Bridge and Rundell. Image: Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images.

The Queen’s coronation

Meanwhile, at Windsor Castle, the focus of exhibitions will be on the Queen’s coronation in June 1953. The main focus of this exhibition includes a look at the coronation dress and robe, as well as some of her most famous brooches.

The coronation dress. Image: Royal Collection Trust

She often wears brooches that represent the emblems of Commonwealth countries while visiting or meeting their representatives. 

The Australian Wattle Brooch, presented on the Queen’s first visit to Australia in 1954. Image: Royal Collection Trust

These include the Canadian Maple-Leaf Brooch, worn by the then Princess Elizabeth on her first visit to Canada in 1951, the Flame-Lily Brooch, the emblem of Zimbabwe, which was pinned to the Queen’s mourning clothes when she returned to Britain from Kenya after the death of her father in 1952 as well as the New Zealand Silver-Fern Brooch, presented by the Women of Auckland on Christmas Day, 1953.

The Queen’s Flame-Lily Brooch. Image: Royal Collection Trust

At Palace of Hollyroodhouse in Scotland, the focus will be on the Queen’s historic jubilees.

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