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Queen Olga’s Pearl Brooch

Today marks the Anniversary of the Birth of Queen Olga of Greece, grandmother of the Duke of Edinburgh, in whose honour we are taking a look at her Pearl and Diamond Devant de Corsage.

Consisting of entwined ribbon and scroll motifs, set with cushion-shaped diamonds, with three large white pearls, and twelve pear shaped pearls suspended from rows of diamonds.

The Devant de Corsage was originally worn by Queen Olga of Greece, most notably for a portrait in the early 20th century. The piece seems to have been an acquisition for Queen Olga, who got many glittering jewels from her Romanov relatives for her wedding in 1867.

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After her death in 1926, the Pearl and Diamond Devant de Corsage was inherited by her so, Prince George, and was worn by his wife, Princess Marie Bonaparte, an intriguing figure who was a champion of Sigmund Freud. It was worn at the wedding of her only daughter, Princess Eugenie, in Paris in 1938 and at the pre-wedding Ball of her nephew, Prince Phillip, at Buckingham Palace in 1947.

Princess Marie notably wore the Pearl and Diamond Devant de Corsage for a series of portraits in 1962. It was inherited by Princess Eugenie, and later by her younger son, Prince Carlo Alessandro della Torre e Tasso, the 3rd Duke of Castel Duino, who auctioned it at the Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels Sale in Geneva in 2010.

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