Today marks the 120th Anniversary of the Birth of Edwina, Countess Mountbatten of Burma, who was born on this day in 1900! The vivacious Heiress who married Prince Philip’s ambitious uncle and lived an uninhibited life before serving with distinction in WWII and becoming the last Vicereine of India, Lady Mountbatten had a fascinating life and quite a lovely jewellery collection. We have already discussed many of her jewels, including the Mountbatten Tiara, her Pearl and Diamond Tiara, Pearl Star Tiara, and Art Deco Diamond Necklace but today we are going to feature her famous Emerald Necklace.
Consisting of nine large emeralds, they were originally set in an Art Deco Chain and are thought to have been acquired by the then Lady Louis Mountbatten in the 1930s, which is how they were worn at the Coronation of her husband’s cousin, King George VI in 1937.
However, in the 1940s, presumably around the time of her husband’s appointment as the last Viceroy of India, after which he was made Earl Mountbatten of Burma, the Emeralds were reset to be suspended from a diamond collar, which was worn at a Gala Performance at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London on the eve of the Coronation of Queen Elisabeth II with her Pearl and Diamond Tiara, and at the Coronation itself the following morning with the Mountbatten Tiara. The Necklace was also worn to a Thanksgiving Dinner with the Queen in 1958.
After Lady Mountbatten’s death, her Emerald Necklace was inherited by her younger daughter, the fascinating Lady Pamela Hicks, who sold the Necklace at Auction for