Eines der herrlichsten Diademe ist das der Duchess of Fife. Grosse
Diamant Tropfen und runde Diamanten sind in einem raffinierten Gerüst
aus Gold und Silber, dabei sind die Diamanten von unterschiedlicher
Grösse, das jedoch so angeordnet ist, das es als Designelement
gelten kann. Die freihängenden Tropfen sind in offenen Fassungen
und bekommen viel Licht von allen Seiten, das muss eine enorme Wirkung
haben. Kissenförmige Diamanten sind noch in der Basis eingelassen,
unterbrochen von Rauten.
Drei Generation mit dem Diadem der Duchess of Fife, sie erhielt dieses
Diadem als Hochzeitsgeschenk von ihrem zukünftigen Gatten, dem
6.Earl und ersten Duke of Fife.
Alexandra Duchess of Fife in der Mitte, gekleidet für die Krönung
im Jahr 1937.
Unten im Bild die Countess Macduff mit dem Familienschmuck an ihrer
The diamond tiara is mounted in gold and set in silver. The pendant
pear-shaped diamonds are articulated and move at the slightest touch.
This jewel looks exactly alike to the tiara that Oscar Massin displayed
at the Exposition Universelle of 1878.
See below the picture from the
exhibition and the above righthand corner. Some of the stones appear
to be a different shape but every element of the design is the same.
For these reasons, it is tempting to attribute the splendid piece to
the jeweller who was famous in his own time for the lightness of his
Above left: HRH Princess Royal, Duchess of Fife, (1867-1931), Princess
Louise (Victoria Alexandra Dagmar) of Wales, wearing her wedding gift.
Above center: The Fife tiara, worn here by Princess Alexandra, Duchess
later Princess Arthur of Connaught, nee Lady Alexandra Duff. She was
the daughter of Princess Louise of Wales and the Duke of Fife.
The picture shows her robed for the 1937 Coronation of George VI.
Above Countess Macduff is wearing a valuable tiara of brillant, rose-cut
and large pear-shaped diamonds, it comprises hundreds of diamonds ranging in weight from one to ten carats, and features a spectacular row of pear shaped ‘swing set’ diamonds, which would have dazzled onlookers when worn,it was made in 5 parts and now is one piece. Composed of nearly 200 carats of diamonds.
It was the gift from her husbands
great-grandfather to his bride, the Princess Royal, when he, the sixth
Earl and first Duke of Fife, married her at Buckingham Palace in 1887.
Contemporary magazine reports and their accompanying illustration make
it clear that this tiara was in fact a gift from the Duke of Fife to
his bride.. .
The Graphic Royal Wedding Number, August 2, 1889, 26 provides
a description of the tiara given by the Duke of Fife to his bride
"The tiara is in a very uncommon and beautiful design, composed
of hundreds of stones, ranging in weight from one carat to ten, the
larger being what are technically known as briolettes--that is cut on
both sides and turning on pivots so that they will flash with every
movement of the head."
The same issue of The Graphic described a diamond tiara, convertible
to a necklace . .of elegant design of alternating and graduating rays, varying
from nearly two inches long in the centre to half an inch at the extreme
ends as a gift from the Prince and Princess of Wales (later King Edward
and Queen Alexandra). The kokoshnik tiara was supplied by the firm of Hancocks. The Tiara>>
Additionally on page 23 of this Graphic Royal Wedding Number,
August 2, 1889, there is an illustration of the tiara given by the Prince
and Princess of Wales. It is a described as:
" . . . a superb tiara of lovely brilliants of chaste design,
the rays of diamonds being nearly two inches long in the centre, and
graduating downwards towards the ends, while each alternate ray has
a pretty tapering effect, which materially adds to its beauty. The tiara
is a very large one, and is so flexible that it can be bent upon the
hair to suit any style of coiffure, and can also form a necklace. The
design is Russian, consisting of straight lines, but the jewellers have
secured considerable lightness of effect by the introduction of slender
lines between the taller ones." The illustration is that of
an alternating and graduated ray tiara - The Fringe Tiara.
The Illustrated London News of August 3, 1889 has the following
description "The Prince and Princess of Wales presented their
daughter with a beautiful tiara of fine brilliants, of elegant design
of alternating and graduating rays, varying from nearly two inches long
in the centre to half an inch at the extreme ends. By a simple arrangement
it also forms a beautiful and graceful necklace."