Today marks the 95th Anniversary of the Birth of the late Princess Bejaratana Rajasuda of Thailand, who was born on this day in 1925! The only child of a Thai King, who died hours after her birth, the Princess possessed some stunning jewels, the most magnificent of which we will feature today: her Emerald Suite
But first lets learn about the Princess! The only child of King Vajiravudh (Rama VI) and Princess Suvadhana, Princess Bejaratana Rajasuda was born the day before her father’s death, and grew up at the Suan Hongsa Villa in Dusit Palace, educated by private tutors. She moved in with Queen Dowager Sri Savarindira during World War II, and attended the Rajani School before moving to England for many years until returning to Thailand in 1957. Princess Bejaratana built the Ruenruedi Villa Palace, and undertook a series of engagements representing the Royal Family, getting the title of ‘Princess Cousin’ as the first cousin of King Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand, and as a third cousin of King Norodom Sihanouk of Cambodia. Princess Bejaratana’s extensive official duties were related to education, public health, Buddhism, the military, and general public welfare, which she continued to support until her death in 2011, which was followed by a lavish Funeral the following year .
Featuring a necklace of large emerald and diamond links and an elaborate corsage brooch which can be worn as a pendant on the necklace, the suite likely dates from the Victorian or Edwardian era and is possibly a Thai Royal Heirloom, though Princess Bejaratana was mainly pictured wearing the suite in the 1970s, 80s and 90s, in a variety of configurations. While Princess Bejaratana wore Queen Sirikit’s Thai Tiara and the Thai Diamond Fringe, the suite is thought to be her personal property, and since she had not children, it seems to have been inherited by the Royal Family after her death in 2011.
Over the past few weeks, Princess Bejaratana’s Emerald Suite was publicly worn again, not by Queen Suthida or another member of the Royal Family, but by King Maha Vajiralongkorn‘s recently reinstated Nobel Consort Sineenat Bilaskalayani, who has worn the necklace and the corsage brooch at religious festivities. Lets hope we continue to see this stunning suite for years to come!