THE PAIR OF GOLD, TINTED ROCK CRYSTAL INTAGLIO AND ENAMEL CUFFLINKS, ENGLISH, CIRCA 1915
- gold, crystal, enamel
Cf: Sotheby's, The Jewels of the Duchess of Windsor, Geneva, Friday 3rd April 1987, Lot 105.
Cf: Robert Werlich, Orders and Decorations of All Nations, Ancient and Modern Civil and Military, Second Edition, 1974, page 199 - 200.
The Most Noble Order of the Garter was founded by King Edward III in 1348. It is the highest British Order of Knighthood and one of the oldest and most esteemed in the world. The motto Honi Soit Qui Mal Y Pense in Old French translates as 'Shame to him, who evil thinks'. This statement is thought to have originated from an incident at a reception where the Countess of Salisbury's garter broke and fell to the floor. King Edward is supposed to have picked it up and noticing the onlookers comments and expressions rebuked them with the words, "Dishononored be he who thinks evil of it." Membership of the Order of the Garter is limited to the reigning monarch and twenty-five Christian Knights. Selected Royal Heads of State are admitted and known as Extra Knights and Ladies of the Garter. A garter of dark blue velvet is worn by the British Sovereign. Gentlemen wear it on the left leg below the knee and lady members on the left arm above the elbow
The Prince automatically became a Knight of the Garter in 1910, when his father created him Prince of Wales. He took part in the Garter ceremony of 10 June 1911 when he was formally invested. He was briefly Sovereign of the Order in 1936. As Duke of Windsor he remained a Knight of the Garter, his third Garter banner (the heraldry being different) hanging over his stall until his death in 1972.
Several times he was painted in Garter robes, and as Duke of Windsor, he posed for James Gunn at the Moulin des Tuileries. That portrait is now in the Musée de la Légion d'Honneur in Paris.