This month, we are marking the Bicentenary of the Birth of Queen Victoria by featuring her Top 20 Jewels, one for each decade since the Birth of 2nd-longest reigning British Monarch, in the 20 days leading up to the Anniversary itself, and today’s feature is her Diamond Jubilee Brooch-
Featuring a large central pearl surrounded by scrolls of diamonds, with a detachable row of diamonds and a pearl perl pendent, this Garrard brooch was a gift to Queen Victoria from current and former members of the Royal Household for her Diamond Jubilee in 1897. While she wasn’t pictured wearing the piece, Queen Victoria designated it an Heirloom of the Crown upon her death in 1901, meaning it passes from Queen to Queen. Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee Brooch became a favourite of Queen Elizabeth (later the Queen Mother) after her husband’s accession in 1936, most notably worn for the Wedding of her eldest daughter, Queen Elizabeth II, and the Duke of Edinburgh in 1947.
Like quite a few other Heirlooms of the Crown, the Queen Mother retained Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee Brooch after her daughter’s accession in 1952, and it continued to be a favourite over the next five decades, again notably worn for her 99th Birthday in 1999.
After the Queen Mother’s death in 2002, Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee Brooch finally passed to the Queen, who has worn it a couple of times, usually preferring wear it without the detachable chain for daytime engagements.