Details & Cataloguing

Royal Jewels from the Bourbon Parma Family


Exceptional and highly important natural pearl and diamond pendant, 18th century
Set with an oval diamond supporting a diamond bow motif and a slightly baroque drop  shaped natural pearl measuring approximately 15.90 x 18.35 x 25.85mm, hook and hinged back fitting, the pearl and diamond bow motif were suspended from Marie Antoinette’s three strand pearl necklace; the single stone oval diamond surmount formed the clasp of that same necklace (see page *** for an illustration of Marie Antoinette pearl necklace and inventory description), together with an original fitted case mentioned in Marie Anne of Austria, Princess Elie de Bourbon Parme’s inventory for the three row pearl necklace (lot….), the single row (lot…), the pair of pearl and diamond earrings (lot …) and the pearl and diamond pendant (lot …).
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Accompanied by SSEF report no. 93539, stating that the pearl was found to be natural, saltwater, together with an appendix letter.


Formerly in the collection of Marie-Antoinette, Queen of France (1755-1793).

The inventory written by Archduchess Marie Anne of Austria, Princess Elie de Bourbon Parme, mentions: 

"Une grande parure de perles (...):

1. Trois rangs de grosses perles, dont le premier de 49 perles, le deuxième de 53 perles, et le troisième de 61 perles, en tout 161 perles. (Cf. lots ****** and ****)


3. Une grosse poire avec petit noeud en diamants, et gros solitaire. La poire faisait autrefois, avec le noeud en diamants, partie du 3ème rang de grosses perles. Le solitaire formait autrefois le fermoir du grand collier (lot ****).

4. Deux boucles d'oreilles, boutons et poires en perles (lot **).

(...) Cette parure provient tel quel (sic) de la Reine Marie Antoinette, et a été légué (sic) par Marie Thérèse de France, Duchesse d'Angoulême, Comtesse de Marne, à sa nièce et fille adoptive, Louise Marie Thérèse de France, Mademoiselle Duchesse de Parme". 

[A large pearl parure (...):

1. Three rows of large pearls the first one comprising 49 pearls, the second 53 pearls and the third one 61 pearls, in total 161 pearls (Cf. lots ****** and ****).


3. A large drop with a small diamond bow and a large diamond. The drop was originally, together with the diamond bow, part of the third row of large pearls. The diamond was originally the clasp of the large necklace (lot ****).

4. Two earrings set with button and drop shaped pearls (lot 98).

(...) This parure comes as it is from Queen Marie Antoinette and was inherited by Marie Thérèse de France, Duchess d'Angoulême, Countesse de Marne, then to her niece and adoptive daughter, Louise Marie Thérèse de France, Mademoiselle Duchesse de Parme"].

On the photograph illustrated on page******, the necklace is presented in its original form as it was worn by the most famous Queen of France, Queen Marie Antoinette. Lots 96 and 97 were strung as a three row pearl necklace; lot 99 decorated the front of the necklace and the oval diamond formed the clasp. 

Royal Jewels from the Bourbon Parma Family