Today marks the Anniversary of the Death of Sir Angus Ogilvy, who passed away on this day in 2004, the day after his wife Princess Alexandra’s Birthday. To mark the anniversary, we are taking a look at one of the most prominent gifts from the late Sir Angus to Princess Alexandra, her Golden Jubilee Necklace.
Featuring clusters of diamond around a pearl or turquoise, graduating to a central cluster from which a pear-shaped pearl or turquoise is suspended, the necklace is an almost exact copy of Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee Necklace, without the central crown. While Leslie Field states that the necklace was a wedding gift from the Hon. Angus Ogilvy to the Princess, initially containing just pearls and later adapted to take turquoises when they were also added to the Ogilvy Tiara, Beth on HRJ has presented credible evidence that the necklace was given a few years after the couple’s 1963 wedding, and that both Pearls and Turquoises were worn simultaneously.
Princess Alexandra began wearing the Necklace around early 1967 (possibly making it a 30th Birthday present in 1966), with early appearences including a Gala with Marlon Brando in January, multiple appearences during a Tour of Canada in 1967, the State Opening of Parliament in 1967, a series of portraits by Cecil Beaton, and the Premiere of Lord Mountbatten: A Man for the Century in 1969.
Princess Alexandra wore her necklace, in both the pearl and turquoise versions for a plethora of occasions in the 1970s, 80s, and 90s, both for Galas and Banquets but also for less formal events. The necklace was worn at a Gala Performance of ‘Madame Butterfly’, in memory of the late Sir Angus a few months after his death, at the Norwegian State Banquet in 2005, and last publicly seen at the Prince of Wales’ 60th Birthday Dinner in 2008, but has not been publicly seen in years, though as we saw with her Pearl Corsage Brooch recently, Princess Alexandra can always surprise us with a reappearance!