The British crown jewels, part of the Royal Collection, are a remarkable assortment of over 100 royal ceremonial objects and more than 23,000 gemstones that have been amassed by English monarchs throughout history. These jewels, reflecting the rich heritage of the British monarchy, are not owned by the state but serve as a symbolic representation of the monarch’s right and authority to sit on the throne.
Among the crown jewels are various regalia used in coronations, magnificent crowns, church and banqueting plates, regal robes, and an exceptional assemblage of medals and royal christening fonts. The value of these jewels is estimated to range from $1.2 to $5.8 billion.
Some of the most esteemed and costly pieces include St. Edward’s Crown, the Imperial State Crown, the Sovereign’s Sceptre with Cross, and the Sovereign’s Orb.
In addition to the crown jewels, Queen Elizabeth II possesses a noteworthy personal collection of jewelry and gemstones, valued in the millions. Her assortment comprises diamond tiaras, necklaces, and brooches, adding to the grandeur of her regal stature.
The British Crown Jewels: A Symbol of Monarchy Steeped in History
The British crown jewels hold immense historical and symbolic significance as they represent the right and authority of the monarch to sit on the throne. This priceless collection includes regalia used at coronations, crowns, church and banqueting plates, robes, and a unique assortment of medals and royal christening fonts. Among the most renowned and valuable pieces are:
St. Edward’s Crown
St. Edward’s Crown is an integral part of the crown jewels. Made of solid gold and adorned with over 444 precious and semi-precious stones, this crown has an estimated value of $57 million.
Imperial State Crown
The Imperial State Crown, worn by the monarch during state occasions, is made of gold and embellished with an astonishing 2,868 diamonds, 17 sapphires, 11 emeralds, 269 pearls, and 4 rubies. Its estimated worth ranges from $3.4 to $5.7 billion.
Sovereign’s Sceptre with Cross
The Sovereign’s Sceptre with Cross has been used in every coronation since Charles II’s in 1661. Fashioned from gold and adorned with 333 diamonds, 31 rubies, 15 emeralds, 7 sapphires, and other precious gemstones, it features the remarkable Great Star of Africa, a 530.2-carat diamond valued at approximately $400 million.
The Sovereign’s Orb, a hollow gold sphere encircled by emeralds, rubies, and sapphires and topped with a cross, serves as a reminder of the monarch’s divine authority. This symbolic piece underscores the belief that the monarch’s power stems from God.
The crown jewels are subject to strict rules and only three individuals in the world, namely the current monarch, the Archbishop of Canterbury, and the crown jeweler, are permitted to touch them. For over 800 years, they have resided within the confines of the Tower of London, emerging exclusively for official portraits, coronations, and other momentous ceremonial events.
Queen Elizabeth’s Personal Jewelry Collection: A Reflection of her Wealth and Legacy
Queen Elizabeth II, one of the wealthiest monarchs in the world, possesses a personal collection of jewelry and gemstones worth millions of dollars. Her collection includes a dazzling array of diamond tiaras, necklaces, brooches, and other exquisite pieces. These precious jewels not only represent her immense wealth but also hold significant historical and sentimental value.
Queen Elizabeth’s personal jewelry collection is a testament to the close ties within her family and relationships with foreign leaders. Many pieces have been gifted by family members, while others are diplomatic presents or tributes from organizations and individuals worldwide. The King Faisal Diamond Necklace, adorned with an 84-carat diamond, was a gift from King Faisal of Saudi Arabia and has been cherished by the queen, Princess Diana, and other members of the royal family.
Among the notable treasures in Queen Elizabeth’s personal collection is the Nizam of Hyderabad Necklace. This magnificent piece, presented by the ruler of a former Indian state, boasts a breathtaking display of 300 diamonds and commands an estimated worth of $76.3 million. Additionally, the Lover’s Knot Tiara, inherited from Queen Mary and famously worn by Princess Diana, holds a value ranging between $1 million and $2 million, further exemplifying the opulence of the queen’s jewelry repertoire.
With the Diamond Diadem, the Williamson Pink Diamond Brooch, and numerous other coveted pieces in her possession, Queen Elizabeth’s personal jewelry collection is an enduring legacy. As the queen’s reign continues to unfold, it remains uncertain who in the royal family will inherit these remarkable treasures, with her grandchildren and extended family members likely to have a say in their future.