Crown of Queen Elizabeth, The Queen Mother

Today marks the 20th Anniversary of the Death of Queen Elizabeth, The Queen Mother, who died on this day in 2002! The Scottish Aristocrat who unexpectedly became the popular wartime Queen and then the beloved Queen Mother for half a century, we have featured many of her jewels over the years and to mark the day today, we are featuring the Crown of Queen Elizabeth, The Queen Mother!

The Queen Mother’s Tiaras | Crown of Queen Elizabeth, The Queen Mother | Oriental Circlet TiaraCoronation Rivière | Queen Alexandra’s Wedding Necklace | Greville Festoon Necklace | Greville Emerald Necklace | Queen Adelaide’s Fringe Necklace | Teck Flower Brooch | Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee Brooch | Queen Victoria’s 11 Pearl BroochIrish Guards Brooch | Sapphire Fringe Earrings | Maple Leaf Brooch | Queen Victoria’s Fringe Brooch | Queen Mother’s Birthdays

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After the Abdication of King Edward VIII in 1936 and the Accession of King George VI, it was decided to continue with the planned Coronation date of 1937, only this time with a different King, and a Queen Consort. Queen Alexandra and QUeen Mary had new Crowns made for their Coronations and this a new Crown was made by Garrard & Co in record time with detachable four half-arches at the crosses pattée, set with 2,800 diamonds in platinum, including the famed Koh-i-Noor Diamond and a 17-carat Diamond given to Queen Victoria from the Ottoman Sultan.

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Queen Elizabeth was crowned with the new Crown during the Coronation of King George VI at Westminster Abbey that May, in an important rite of the Coronation Ritual. That was the only occasion when the Crown was worn in its full form, later only worn without the arches.

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After the Coronation, Queen Elizabeth wore her Crown, without its Arches, for the State Opening of Parliament in 1937 and the State Opening of Parliament in 1938, when the King and Queen rode to the Houses of Parliament in the Golden State Coach.

Surprisingly for a piece of the Crown Jewels, which cannot be taken out of the United Kingdom, Queen Elizabeth took her Crown on the legendary Visit to Paris in 1938, wearing it for the State Banquet at the Élysée Palace.

After the Second World War, there was many ‘dressed down’ State Openings of Parliament, and Queen Elizabeth wore the Oriental Circlet Tiara for the State Opening in 1948, so it was not until 1950 that the Crown was worn again for a State Opening. That year, the Queen also wore the Crown for the French State Banquet at Buckingham Palace, when there was an appearance on the Balcony of Buckingham Palace

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The most iconic appearance of the Crown came in 1953, when the Queen Mother wore her Crown for the Coronation of her elder daughter, Queen Elizabeth II, at Westminster Abbey, similar to how Queen Mary had worn her own Crown at the 1937 Coronation.

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After the Queen’s Coronation, the only notable appearance of the Crown came in 1960, for the French State Banquet at Buckingham Palace, during President De Gaulle’s State Visit to Britain, when there was an appearance on the Balcony of Buckingham Palace. Since there were no photographs taken at State Banquets up until the late 1960s, it is possible that the Queen Mother also wore the Crown to important State Banquets, like the Dutch State Visit to Britain in  1950, the Danish State Visit to Britain in 1951, the Norwegian State Visit to Britain in 1951, and the Swedish State Visit to Britain in 1954.

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The last time the Queen Mother’s Crown was used was after her death in 2002, when the Crown was placed on top of the coffin for the Lying-in-State, the Procession through London, and the Funeral Service at Westminster Abbey.

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Nowadays, the the Crown is on display in the Jewel House of the Tower of London. With the news that the Duchess of Cornwall will become Queen in due course, the debate around the Kohinoor Diamond sparked again. It will be fascinating to see how the matter is handled in time for the next Coronation!

The Queen Mother’s Tiaras | Crown of Queen Elizabeth, The Queen Mother | Oriental Circlet TiaraCoronation Rivière | Queen Alexandra’s Wedding Necklace | Greville Festoon Necklace | Greville Emerald Necklace | Queen Adelaide’s Fringe Necklace | Teck Flower Brooch | Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee Brooch | Queen Victoria’s 11 Pearl BroochIrish Guards Brooch | Sapphire Fringe Earrings | Maple Leaf Brooch | Queen Victoria’s Fringe Brooch | Queen Mother’s Birthdays

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