Queen Elizabeth II and her Tiaras
Queen Elizabeth II is known for her extensive and priceless collection of jewelry. The tiaras that we feature in this article do not belong to the Crown Jewel, which are held in trust for the nation. They are rather the personal property of the sovereign. These tiaras have history that spanned hundreds of years and have seen alteration as they changed hands. Here are some of the most fabulous tiaras in the Queen's collection!
Delhi Durbar Tiara
In 1911, King George V and Queen Mary were to be crowned Emperor and Empress of India. However, British law prohibits anyone from taking the British Crown Jewels outside the country. The solution? A new set of coronation regalia was made for the Delhi Durbar. Jewelers Garrard & Co. crafted this tiara for Queen Mary. It comes with a necklace, stomacher, brooch and earrings. The tiara was altered in 1912 to take one or both of the Cullinan III and IV diamonds. Later in 1947, Princess Elizabeth wore the tiara on her trip to South Africa.
George III Fringe Tiara
The George III Fringe Tiara contains diamonds once owned by King George III. It was commissioned in 1830 and has, since then, been worn by many queens-consort. It may also be worn as a collar, necklace or suspended on a wire to form the tiara.
Queen Mary Fringe Tiara
The Queen Mary Fringe Tiara was crafted in 1919 for Queen Mary using Queen Victoria's diamonds. This tiara, which may be converted into a necklace, was passed on to Queen Elizabeth in 1936 and was worn by her daughter, the future Queen Elizabeth II, on her wedding in 1947.
Grand Duchess Vladimir Tiara
Also known as the Diamond and Pearl Tiara, this jewelry piece contains diamond rivière. It was acquired by Queen Mary from Princess Nicholas of Greece (Princess Marina’s mother) in 1921 for £28,000. Princess Nicholas, a member of the Russian Imperial Family, inherited the tiara from her mother, Grand Duchess Maria Pavlovna, who received it as a wedding present in 1874 from her husband, Grand Duke Vladimir. Emeralds or pearls may be suspended on the circlets.
Burmese Ruby Tiara
The Burmese Ruby Tiara was made by Garrard & Co. for Queen Elizabeth II in 1973 using stones from her private collection. The tiara forms a circlet of roses accentuated by silver and diamonds that look like petals. The center of the flowers contains clusters of gold and rubies.
Girls of Great Britain and Ireland Tiara
This is the first-ever tiara of Queen Elizabeth II, a gift from Queen Mary on her wedding day in 1947. The tiara was given to Queen Mary in 1893 as a wedding gift from the Girls of Great Britain and Ireland. This tiara is the most recognizable among the Queen’s collection since it was featured on many English banknotes and coins.
Queen Alexandra's Kokoshnik Tiara
In 1888, Alexandra, Princess of Wales, celebrated her silver wedding anniversary with the Prince of Wales (future Edward VII). For this special occassion, Lady Salisbury and the other peeresses of Great Britain gave her this tiara, a dream come true for the future queen. She always wanted a tiara that looked like a kokoshnik (cock's comb), a traditional Russian folk headdress. She knew the design so well because her sister, Marie Feodorovna, also had a tiara designed like a kokoshnik. Queen Mary inherited the tiara upon Queen Alexandra’s death.
Cambridge Lover's Knot Tiara
This tiara was made in 1913 after Queen Mary commissioned Garrard & Co. to make one that resembled her grandmother’s. Her own diamonds and pearls were used. It contained 19 oriental pearls held by lover's knot bows with a large brilliant at the center. The tiara passed on to Queen Elizabeth II, who also gave it Diana, Princess of Wales, on her wedding day. The Duchess of Cambridge was seen wearing it at a diplomatic reception at Buckingham Palace in 2015.
Princess Andrew of Greece's Meander Tiara
Princess Andrew of Greece, the mother of Prince Philip, gave this tiara to Princess Elizabeth on her wedding day in 1947. The pattern is Greek-inspired featuring a huge diamond surrounded by laurel wreath of smaller diamonds. Queen Elizabeth II was never seen wearing this tiara in public. Instead, she gave this to Princess Anne in 1972, who was frequently seen wearing this tiara.
Made by Cartier in 1936, the tiara was purchased by the Duke of York for his wife only three weeks before they ascended to the throne as King and Queen. The tiara features a rolling cascade of 16 scrolls converging on two central scrolls topped by a diamond. The tiara contains 739 brilliants and 149 baton diamonds. It was a gift to Princess Elizabeth on her 18th birthday in 1944. Princess Margaret wore it in 1953 on her Elizabeth's coronation. It was later worn by the Duchess of Cambridge on her wedding to Prince William in 2011.