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From the sentimental aquamarine clips she chose for the 2021 State Opening of Parliament to the turquoise heirloom selected for her televised 2020 Covid address, the Queen’s brooches remain some of her most meaningful and frequently-worn items of jewellery.
And now four of her newest brooches are to be displayed for the first time as part of a Windsor Castle exhibition celebrating her Coronation in her Platinum Jubilee year. Platinum Jubilee: The Queen’s Coronation explores the June 1953 Coronation through portraiture, photographs, and items including the Coronation Dress, Robe of Estate, and the Coronation Necklace and Earrings.
As well as jewellery worn at the coronation, a set of four diamond brooches given to the Queen for her Diamond Jubilee in 2012 are being displayed. Each featuring a floral emblem of the United Kingdom; roses for England, thistles for Scotland, daffodils for Wales and shamrocks for Northern Ireland, the brooches were a present from the Sultan of Oman and the Queen has worn them several times while making visits in the UK.
“It is very special to be able to display the four brooches in the form of emblems of the countries of the United Kingdom for the first time, particularly as they were given to the Queen relatively recently for the Diamond Jubilee in 2012,” curator of the display Caroline de Guitaut said. “In spite of being fairly new additions to her personal jewellery collection they have been frequently worn in the relevant nations, such as when the Queen wore the Daffodil brooch to open the Sixth Senedd in Cardiff in 2021.”
Brooches are among the items of jewellery that the Queen wears the most often, on formal occasions but also on everyday visits during trips at home and overseas.
Throughout her life she has been gifted brooches often representing the nations they are from, such as the Wattle Brooch bearing the flower of Australia which was presented to her during her 1954 Commonwealth tour. This brooch will also be on display in Windsor this summer as well as the Maple-Leaf Brooch bearing the emblem of Canada (previously owned by the Queen Mother), the Flame-Lily Brooch with the emblem of Zimbabwe, and the Silver Fern Brooch from New Zealand.
The coronation display, which runs from 7 July to 26 September, will showcase the Queen's Norman Hartnell Coronation Dress alongside the Robe of Estate that she wore to process through Westminster Abbey for the ceremony. They will be on display in the castle’s largest room, St George’s Hall, alongside sketches and embroidery samples from Hartnell’s design process for the dress.
The necklace and earrings that the Queen wore for the occasion can be seen in the nearby Lantern Lobby. Other highlights of the exhibition include a portrait of the Queen by Sir Herbert James Gunn and one of Cecil Beaton’s official coronation photographs.
The Platinum Jubilee: The Queen’s Coronation exhibit be open to visitors of Windsor Castle from 7 July 26 September, 2022 and is included in the price of a general admission ticket. Windsor Castle is open to visitors Thursday to Monday, remaining closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
Additionally, a digital event Royal Jewels: A Platinum Jubilee Celebration will take place on Thursday, July 28. Tickets can be booked at www.rct.uk.
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