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Details & Cataloguing

Royal Jewels from the Bourbon Parma Family

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Geneva

Superb diamond parure
Comprising: a diamond rivière composed of a slightly graduated row of cushion-shaped diamonds in pinched collets, supporting detachable pendants set with pear-shaped stones, each link detachable, length approximately 390mm, a brooch set with cushion-shaped diamonds, supporting three detachable pendants set with pear-shaped diamonds, may be worn as a clasp for the diamond rivière, and a pair of earrings, each set with a cushion-shaped diamond, post and hinged back fittings, fitted case.
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Provenance

The diamonds from this parure come from Charles Ferdinand d’Artois, Duc de Berry (1778-1820), Charles X’s son; Marie-Thérèse de France, Madame Royale, Marie Antoinette’s daughter (1778-1851); and Princess Isabelle de Croÿ, Archduchess Frédéric of Austria (1856-1931). Please refer to the previous pages for further details.

Princess Marie Anne mentions in her inventory:

"Une grande parure de diamants, dans un écrin en velours bleu foncé, composée de 2 rangs de diamants, un rang de gouttes, une broche (13 diamants dont un très gros et 3 gouttes), un fermoir (un gros et 10 plus petits diamants) et une paire de boucles d'oreilles. Cette parure provient de l'épée du Duc de Berry, et a été léguée par sa fille, Louise de France, Mademoiselle Duchesse de Parme, à son fils Robert I, Duc de Parme (...).

15 mars 1932 : Les diamants de la première rangée, 38, ainsi que le fermoir (gros diamant entouré de 10 plus petits) font partie d'une grande rivière avec pendentifs. Les 5 gros diamants solitaires (de la Reine Marie Antoinette) et le pendentif (gros diamant en forme de poire, succession de ma mère) se laissent porter séparément". 

[A large diamond parure, in a dark blue velvet case, composed of two rows of diamonds, a row with drops, a brooch (13 diamonds including a very large one and three drops), a clasp (a large one and 10 smaller diamonds) and a pair of earrings. This parure comes from the sword of the Duke of Berry and was given by his daughter, Louis de France, Mademoiselle Duchesse de Parme, to her son Robert I, Duc de Parme (...).

15 March 1932: The diamonds of the first row, 38, and the clasp (large diamond framed with 10 smaller ones) are part of a large rivière with pendants. The 5 large diamonds (from Queen Marie Antoinette) and the pendant (large pear-shaped diamond, estate of my mother) can be worn independently.]

Princess Marie Anne mentions in her inventory five diamonds formerly in the collection of Queen Marie Antoinette, but they most probably come from her daughter, Madame Royale; please refer to pg. 91 for the details of the provenance. 

Catalogue Note

The Duke de Berry (1778-1820)

In 1816, Princess Marie Caroline de Bourbon-Siciles married Prince Charles Ferdinand d’Artois, Duke de Berry, a nephew of King Louis XVIII. The duke was one of the last princes of the male line of the royal house of France. His brother, the Duke d’Angoulême, was married to Marie Thérèse de France, called Madame Royale, the only surviving child of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette. In 1820, the Duke de Berry was assassinated by a French Republican, Pierre Louis Louvel, who was hoping for the extinction of the French Bourbon line; but his wife, Princess Caroline, was pregnant and gave birth to a son, Henri, in September 1820. Henri, Duke de Bordeaux who became Comte de Chambord, was the last of the elder line of the Bourbon family. His sister Louise, married a future Duke de Parme, Charles III, in 1845. It was for their wedding celebration that one of her father’s diamond encrusted swords was broken up, and the stones used to create a beautiful necklace, lot 69. This necklace is described years later in an inventory of jewels by the Archduchess Marie-Anne of Austria, Princess Elie de Bourbon Parme: “Une grande parure de diamants dans un écrin en velours bleu foncé comprenant deux rangs de diamants. Cette parure provient de l’épée du duc de Berry et a été légué par sa fille, Louise de France, Mademoiselle, duchesse de Parme, à son fils Robert Ier, duc de Parme”.

 

In 1903, when she got married, Archduchess Marie-Anne had a pair of earrings and a brooch made to be worn with the necklace, with a pear-shaped diamond given to her by her mother and five important diamonds (the ones on the earrings, the central diamond on the brooch and the two remaining pendants on the brooch) from the collection of Madame Royale, Marie-Thérèse de France. These five diamonds were given by the Comte de Chambord to Princess Marie-Pie de Bourbon-Siciles when she married Robert de Bourbon-Parme, Duke of Parma, in 1869. The stones come from an important tiara from Marie-Thérèse de France, Duchess of Angoulême, created at the beginning of the Restauration in France in the second half of the 1810s. In 1819, The Duchess d’Angoulême requested official permission to keep the tiara in her private jewellery collection. King Louis XVIII, her uncle, allowed her to keep the frame of the tiara but asked for the diamonds to be removed and sent back to the Treasure as they were part of the French Crown jewels. But the King ordered that 400,000 francs or worth of diamonds should be purchased and paid by his own private funds and reset on the tiara frame. The Comte de Chambord inherited the tiara from his aunt, the Duchess d’Angoulême, and used the diamonds from the jewel to give wedding presents to his nephews and nieces. The tiara frame, without the diamonds, was sold at Sotheby’s in 2008 as part of the Mavrommatis collection (lot 82).

Royal Jewels from the Bourbon Parma Family

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Geneva