Lot 638
  • 638

A Fabergé jewelled and enamelled gold and hardstone flower study, St Petersburg, circa 1900

Estimate
200,000 - 250,000 GBP
Sold
bidding is closed

Description

  • gold, crystal, nephrite, diamond, enamel,wood, silk, metal
  • height: 9.4cm, 3 3/4 in.
formed as a single stem of viola tricolour, or Wild Pansy, the five petals of the bloom enamelled in shades of violet and yellow, the stigma set with a rose-cut diamond, carved nephrite leaves, resting in a rock crystal pot, unmarked apart from scratched inventory number 5218, in original Fabergé wood case, with note inscribed in ink: 'Present from Queen Alexandra to 1st Lady Iveagh'

Provenance

Given by Queen Alexandra to the 1st Lady Iveagh

Thence by descent

Exhibited

Fabergé from Private Collections, Wartski, London, 1992, no. 46

Catalogue Note

Fabergé flowers are among the most treasured objects produced by the firm's workmasters and continue to charm collectors, scholars and enthusiasts.  Their beauty lies in the clever illusion of simplicity, as if a freshly cut wild sprig has been dropped into a little pot of water, despite their painstaking creation, the elements so carefully chosen, designed and crafted.

Only approximately eighty flowers are thought to have been made.  Queen Alexandra, having been introduced to them by her sister, Empress Maria Feodorovna, was one of the greatest collectors; thus today the British Royal Collection contains twenty-six, including three pansies (RCIN 40210, 40505, 40180; see C. de Guitaut, Fabergé in the Royal Collection, 2003, p. 106-107).  The giving of such a precious object suggests that the Queen had great esteem and affection for Lady Iveagh. 

For more information, please visit sothebys.com.

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