Today marks the 149th Anniversary of the Birth of Queen Maud of Norway, the British Princess who became the first Queen of an Independent Kingdom of Norway. To mark the occasion, as well as the birth and death anniversaries of Queen Alexandra and Queen Maud this week, we have been featuring some of their jewels, featuring Queen Maud’s Drapers’ Company Brooch. Click HERE to learn about Queen Alexandra’s Diamond and Pearl Brooch.
When Princess Maud of Wales married Prince Carl of Denmark in 1896, she received a plethora of glittering jewels, including a ‘diamond and pearl ornament to be worn as a brooch or pendant’ from the Drapers’ Company. After becoming Queen of Norway in 1905, she frequently paired the Brooch with her Pearl and Diamond Tiara. In 1938, Queen Maud brought her jewels with her to England while she was having an operation, and where she passed away of heart failure. Queen Maud’s jewels remained in England, throughout the Norwegian Royal Family’s exile during WWII, and were only reclaimed during a visit for the Queen’s Coronation in 1953. Soon afterwards, her daughter-in-law, Crown Princess Martha passed away, and the brooch remained in the vaults for years until the Norwegian Royal jewellery collection was divided up following the wedding of then Crown Prince Harald in 1968.
Since the 1970s, the Drapers’ Company Brooch has been a favourite of the then Crown Princess now Queen Sonja for a variety of occasions, often paired with her favourite Queen Maud’s Pearl and Diamond Tiara, including at King Harald’s Silver Jubilee Dinner. She has continued to honour the British connection by wearing the piece at royal occasions in the United Kingdom, including the Wedding of Princess Anne in 1973, the Wedding Gala of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Dinner, and most recently at the Prince of Wales’ 70th Birthday Dinner at Buckingham Palace.
Queen Maud’s Drapers’ Company Brooch has also been loaned to Crown Princess Mette Marit, along with Queen Maud’s Pearl and Diamond Tiara, who wore the piece at the Wedding of Crown Princess Victoria in 2010. There is no doubt we will continue to frequently see this brooch for years to come.