Braganza Tiara 

Tomorrow, King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden will become the first Swedish Monarch to celebrate his Golden Jubilee and with Royal Guests and Relatives set to attend a spectacular Banquet at the Royal Palace of Stockholm, we are hoping that Queen Silvia will be wearing the spectacular Brazilian Royal Heirloom that has been the Swedish Royal Family’s most magnificent Tiara for the past 150 years: The Braganza Tiara!

The Braganza Tiara | Leuchtenberg Sapphire Parure | Queen Sofia’s 9-Prong Tiara | Connaught Diamond Tiara | Swedish Cameo Parure | Baden Fringe Tiara | Napoleonic Amethyst Parure | King Edward VII Ruby Tiara | Swedish Aquamarine Kokoshnik Tiara | Napoleonic Cut Steel Tiara | Princess Lilian’s Laurel Wreath Tiara

When Emperor Pedro I of Brazil was marrying for a second time to Princess Amélie of Leuchtenberg in 1829, the Emperor bought diamonds belonging to his first wife, Empress Maria Leopoldina, from their five children, including Queen Maria II of Brazil, the future Emperor Pedro II, and the Princess of Joinville. The Diamonds were used ti create this spectacular Diamond Tiara, which was reportedly made in France. The Tiara is part of a Parure that includes a large Diamond Rivière, a pair of massive Diamond Earrings and a Diamond Floral Brooch.

The Tiara was ready by the time of Princess Amélie’s arrival, being worn by the new Empress for a hand-kissing ceremony following her Wedding. Empress Amélie wrote to her mother, the Duchess of Leuchtenberg, that:

“the Tiara [is made] with the best Brazilian diamonds in various sizes and [of] so pure clarity that [they] seemed made of water”.

Empress Amélie’s tenure as Empress was fairly short, since the Emperor abdicated in 1831, so he could return to Europe in order to help his daughter, Queen Maria II of Portugal, regain her throne against his younger brother, Infante Dom Miguel, who proclaimed himself King.  During this period, Empress Amélie pawned the Braganza Tiara and Parure along with her Napoleonic Emerald Parure in London as collateral for a loan to finance the war, being able to regain the jewels after the Emperor’s victory, which came just shortly before his passing in 1834, when the Empress was only 22.

When Empress Amélie passed away in 1873, she had outlived her only daughter, and the Braganza Tiara along with the Napoleonic Emerald Parure, were inherited by her sister, Queen Josefina of Sweden and Norway, transported from Lisbon to Kristiansand and then to Stockholm. Queen Josefina likely never wore the Tiara but was depicted wearing it in the above portrait made at a later date, but in the Inventory of her Jewellery drawn up following her death in 1876, the ‘great Brazilian parure’ is valued at  248,000 SEK, much more than her Leuchtenberg Sapphire Parure at 69,500 SEK and the Napoleonic Emerald Parure at 41,000 SEK.

The Braganza Tiara was inherited by Queen Josefina’s daughter-in-law, Queen Sofia of Sweden, who notably wore the Tiara for a portrait, along with the Napoleonic Emerald Necklace and Brooch. For decades, the Tiara was mistakenly termed as the ‘Swedish Coronation Tiara’ for having been reportedly worn by Queen Sofia for her Coronation in May 1873, but that is not correct since it arrived in Sweden only after the Coronation.

When Queen Sofia passed away in 1913, the Braganza Tiara passed to her daughter-in-law, Queen Victoria, who notably only wore it for a series of Official Portraits taken in 1914, as well as an Opening of Parliament in the early 1920s shortly before she retired from Official Duties.

Following Queen Victoria’s death in 1930, the Braganza Tiara was inherited by her daughter-in-law, the then Crown Princess Louise, who most notably wore it for Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark and Princess Ingrid of Sweden’s Wedding Gala in Stockholm in 1935, with the Pink Topaz Parure at the Coronation of King George VI at Westminster Abbey in 1937, and with the Napoleonic Amethyst Parure for the Danish State Banquet at the Royal Palace of Stockholm in 1947.

After the Accession of King Gustaf VI Adolf of Sweden in 1950, Queen Louise wore the Braganza Tiara on the grandest occasions, most notably for the Swedish State Opening of Parliament in 1951, during the Swedish State Visit to Denmark in 1952, and for the British State Visit to Sweden in 1956, as well as several Official Portraits until her death in 1965.

Unlike the other grand Royal Heirlooms, like the Leuchtenberg Sapphire Parure and Queen Sofia’s 9-Prong Tiara, which were worn by Princess Sibylla and the Haga Princesses, the Braganza Tiara remained unworn until after the Wedding of King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden in 1976, being worn by the new half-Brazilian Queen Silvia with the Pink Topaz Parure for her first Official Portraits, saying in De Kongelige Juveler:

It came to Sweden by inheritance from Empress Amelie, who had married Dom Pedro I, and for me it is of course a little special, because my mother was Brazilian and Empress Amélie was very much loved in Brazil.

Queen Silvia has reserved the Braganza Tiara for only the most important occasions, primarily for Official Portraits and for State Visits from other Monarchies, like for the British State Visit to Sweden in 1983 and the Dutch State Visit to Sweden in 1987.

In the 1990s, Queen Silvia wore the Braganza Tiara for the Luxembourg State Banquet at the Royal Palace of Stockholm in 1991, during the Norwegian State Visit to Sweden in 1992, and for the Belgian State Visit to Sweden in 1994.

Queen Silvia also wore the Braganza Tiara for several Official Portraits, the Japanese State Visit to Sweden in 2000, as well as for King Carl XVI Gustaf’s 60th Birthday Banquet in 2006, saying in De Kongelige Juveler:

It is a beautiful Tiara, complicated to wear, because it is heavy and it moves, so it not so easy to fix it.

But it is a beautiful ensemble, it has also earrings, they are magnificent, weighing 30 carats each.

We only wear on very, very, very special occasions, like State Visits and on His Majesty’s 60th Birthday.

I wore it on Crown Princess Victoria’s Wedding and I never take it outside the country ever.

Until 2007, Queen Silvia only ever wore the Braganza Tiara inside Sweden, having never taken it abroad, but that year, she took the Tiara, along with the Pink Topaz Parure, for a State Visit to Denmark, where they were hosted by the King’s first cousin, Queen Margrethe II of Denmark, with Queen Silvia saying:

Wearing it in Denmark, that was a very special occasion.

We are so close to each other, not only friends but also family wise. That’s why.

I was thinking “what should I wear?” “What would Queen Margarethe like to see?”

All those Tiaras, of course, are very well known to her so I thought the Brazilian Diadem was perhaps unique.

So I thought- Queen to Queen- that it would be nice to wear it.

Queen Silvia also paired the Braganza Tiara with the Pink Topaz Parure for the Wedding of her eldest daughter, Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden, in 2010, which was her most splendid tiara appearance.

In 2020, Queen Silvia said in Kungliga Smycken:

This is one of the most important Diadems.

It belongs to the King Oscar II foundation, which it says nicely on the box.

It is very beautiful

Look

It is very valuable

And very difficult to wear

It’s very heavy

It’s representative

It truly represents and amazing period- The 1800s

Imagine, everything that’s happened

After a gap of over a decade, Queen Silvia wore the Braganza Tiara at the State Banquet for King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima of The Netherlands, during the Dutch State Visit to Sweden in 2022.

Now, as King Carl XVI Gustaf, who is already the longest-reigning Swedish Monarch, becomes the first Swedish Monarch to celebrate his Golden Jubilee tomorrow, it will be the perfect occasion for Queen Silvia to wear the heirloom Braganza Tiara at the spectacular Banquet at the Royal Palace of Stockholm!

As predicted, Queen Silvia is wearing Braganza Tiara for King Carl XVI Gustaf’s Jubilee Banquet at the Royal Palace of Stockholm!

The Braganza Tiara | Leuchtenberg Sapphire Parure | Queen Sofia’s 9-Prong Tiara | Connaught Diamond Tiara | Swedish Cameo Parure | Baden Fringe Tiara | Napoleonic Amethyst Parure | King Edward VII Ruby Tiara | Swedish Aquamarine Kokoshnik Tiara | Napoleonic Cut Steel Tiara | Princess Lilian’s Laurel Wreath Tiara

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Trond Norén Isaksen | Bijoux Royaux En Folie | Tiara Mania

The Braganza Tiara

Leuchtenberg Sapphire Parure

Queen Sofia’s 9-Prong Tiara

The Swedish Cameo Parure

The Connaught Diamond Tiara

The Baden Fringe Tiara

Napoleonic Amethyst Parure

King Edward VII Ruby Tiara

Swedish Aquamarine Kokoshnik Tiara

Napoleonic Cut Steel Tiara

Princess Lilian’s Laurel Wreath Tiara

Princess Sofia’s Wedding Tiara

Modern Fringe Tiara

Swedish Pink Topaz Parure

Bernadotte Emerald Parure

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