Diamonds, emeralds, rubies and pearls were always woven with the fates of European royalty. A symbol of power and magnificence or a reminder of lost glory. Royal jewels pass from generation to generation and have their own fascinating history. Some of the most famous belonged to members of the Greek royal family.
When in 1967 Grand Duchess Olga Constantinovna of Russia arrived in Greece as Queen Olga after her marriage to King George I she brought with her a set of cabochon emeralds in varying sizes, and wore them in a variety of settings –, as pendants on a necklace, and as brooches.
Upon Queen Olga's death in 1926 her emeralds passed to her grandson, King George II, and his wife Queen Elisabeth of Greece who wore them in a variety of fashions. As a single emerald in a bandeau low across her forehead, in fashion at the time, and she also had several emeralds set in a diamond frame. Eventually she decided to have the emeralds set to a new tiara commissioned by Cartier. The Ο γάμος του βασιλιά Γεωργίου Β' ωστόσο κατέληξε σε διαζύγιο, χωρίς απογόνους.
Queen Elisabeth and King George II divorced and had no children. The tiara remained in the Greek Royal Family, and it makes its next appearance on Queen Frederica, the wife of King Pavlos, younger brother of King George II.
Queen Frederika was enamoured with the emeralds and wore them both as a tiara, or as a necklace. She removed the band at the top and bottom of the tiara, giving the tiara its final form. She also completed the elements of the parure, making use of the remaining emeralds in a pair of earrings, and a large brooch.
Queen Frederika passed the full parure to Anne Marie of Danemark, upon her marriage to her son King Constantine II in 1964.
It's been one of the Anne-Marie's favorites pieces since. She wears it both with the full parure, and with the tiara by itself or parts of the parure separately.
The Empress consort Victoria of Germany, daughter of Queen Victoria gave her daughter, Princess Sophia of Prussia a diamond tiara as a wedding present, upon her marriage with Constantine of Greece in 1889.
Sophia wore the tiara either on the top of the heados a crown or wrap around as a diadem.
The Queen gave the tiara to her daughter princess Helena when she became queen of Romania.
Then the tiara was passed on to the next King and Queen of Greece and became one of Queen Frederica's favorite pieces.
The tiara, which some thought had been sold by Queen Frederica in the seventies, turned up in 2012 on Princess Marie-Chantal.
Another fabulous set was Queen Olga's ruby tiara along with a parure, a wedding present from her parents upon her marriage with king George.
After her death the set went to her son prince Nicholas who gave it to his daughter princess Olga, queen of Yogoslavia.
The King and Queen of Yogoslavia in exile had to sell the set. It was the future King Pavlos of Greece who bought the parure and gave it to Queen Frederica.
When Anne Marie married king Constantine, the parure was passed on to her.
Anne Marie wears it frequently today.
Queen Ingrid of Denmark, Anne Marie's mother, had inherited a set of diamond brooches from her gradmother Queen Victoria of Sweden. Ingrid set the brooches up as a tiara and gave it to Princess Anne-Marie, as an 18th birthday present.
Anne-Marie took the tiara with her when she became Queen of Greece but prefered the larger Greek tiaras available to her. Ever since it was associated with her youth.
Maybe that was the reason why all the young princesses of the family wore it during their youth. Firts off princess Alexia.
Anne Marie lent it to Marie Chantal for her wedding with prince Pavlos in 1995.
Then it was worn by princess Theodora.
And the story goes on with the tiara being lent to princess Tatiata who wore it first on her marriage to Nikolaos. We wonder when we will see young Maria Olympia wearing it.