I mentioned last week that a Mrs. Greville bequeathed her jewelry collection to Queen Elizabeth (the Queen Mother). The Greville Peardrop Earrings are another trinket the lucky Queen Elizabeth inherited.
The earrings were made in 1938 by Cartier for Mrs. Greville. The diamond earrings consist of three portions: pentagonal tops, emerald-cut diamonds and pear-shaped drops. Queen Elizabeth bequeathed them to her daughter Queen Elizabeth II in 2002.
But let’s back up for a second and talk about this Mrs. Greville. Who was she exactly? Mrs. Greville, born Margaret Helen Anderson (1863-1942), was the daughter of William McEwan, the founder of a beer brewing company. She married Captain Ronald Greville, heir to a baronetcy, in 1891. Her marriage provided her with numerous wedding jewels and she purchased more jewelry herself. Mrs. Greville cultivated the fine arts and was a patron of goldsmiths and jewelers. She may not have possessed a royal title, but she ran in the same social circles and entertained royals and celebrities.
The earrings were worn by the Queen Mother on numerous occasions. Today they are worn by Queen Elizabeth II. The legacy of Mrs. Greville lives on!
The note in the will bequeathing the collection read, “To Her Majesty The Queen, with my loving thoughts.” If only we all had a Mrs. Greville in our lives!
These specacular diamond earrings were made by Cartier for Mrs. Ronald Greville in 1929. In 1942 she bequeathed her jewelry collection to Queen Elizabeth (The Queen Mother). Just a few years later, in 1947, the king and queen gave the earrings to their daughter, Princess Elizabeth, as a wedding gift.
The classic design mimics a chandelier. The cut of the diamonds (half-moon, trapeze, square, baguette, baton and emerald) give the earrings their art deco style. I think the design is timeless. Sadly, they haven’t been worn in recent years.
The Coronation Earrings were worn by Queen Elizabeth II for her coronation in 1953. Since her coronation, the queen has worn the earrings at other important events. The earrings were also worn at the coronations of Queen Consort Mary in 1911 and Queen Consort Elizabeth in 1937.
The magnificent diamond earrings were originally made for Queen Victoria by Garrard. She had the earrings made because in 1857 a good chunk of her family’s jewels were sent to Hanover when Victoria lost a lawsuit about where the jewels belonged. Victoria must have loved the earrings as she wore them quite often.