The most expensive gifts ever given to the Queen of England are among the most expensive and valuable gifts that have ever been bestowed among anyone in modern day history. Many of these treasures and jewels are so expensive, that they are only worn at official coronations, and after which they are kept in pristine condition for the next such coronation. So diverse and valuable are these gifts that have been presented to the Queen of England, that when put together, it is still unknown how valuable they all truly are. Many attempts by individuals and private organizations have been made to do so, but none can be considered credible, since none of the people who have tried had any access to the gifts and riches in the first place. Not even the Queen has allowed any official study by British royal or government officials to determine the vast wealth of all the riches put together.
Many of the Queen’s most expensive gifts are jewels and similar riches, but even so, they are still kept separate from the British Crown Jewels. In fact, none of the Queen’s collection of personal gifts are even ceremonial objects of the British state or government, as they belong specifically to her and her alone. Many of these rich pieces came from lands and countries on the other side of the world from the United Kingdom, while others came straight from her personal family in the U.K itself. Even today, the Queen is still seen wearing some of these jewels that were presented to her as gifts, with many of the pieces she wears today having originated from Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the United Kingdom itself. So, without any further ado, let’s dive into the top ten most expensive gifts that have ever been bestowed upon the Queen of England.
10. Vladimir Tiara
The Vladimir Tiara was actually originally purchased by Queen Mary, in 1921. It is also referred to as the Diamond and Pearl Tiara, and was bought from the Grand Duchess Elena Vladimirovna of Russia, who had in turn inherited it from her mother. When adjusted for inflation, the Vladimir Tiara was worth 984,000 pounds at the time. After keeping the Vladimir Tiara for herself for many years, Queen Mary eventually handed it off as a gift to Queen Elizabeth II, and it has remained in her private collection ever since.
9. Festoon Necklace
The Festoon Necklace was originally commissioned by King George VI, in 1947. He called for a necklace to be made out of over one hundred and fifty diamonds, all coming from the diamonds that he had already inherited. The final product consisted of three rows of diamonds, and had a weight of one hundred and seventy carats. George VI eventually handed off the necklace to Elizabeth II.
8. Burmese Ruby Tiara
The Burmese Ruby Tiara was bestowed to Elizabeth II, by Garrard and Co in 1973. It was made out of rubies and gold to form the center of a flower, while diamonds and silver were made to look like the petals of the flower. All in all, the Burmese Ruby Tiara consists of ninety six diamonds. The tiara itself is called the Burmese Ruby because the diamonds and rubies of the tiara were presented as a wedding gift to Elizabeth II, by the Burmese people, who believed that the rubies had the unique ability to protect the person who wore them from illness and death. The rubies and diamonds were already in Elizabeth II’s private collection for many years before 1973, and as you may have guessed, the completed Burmese Ruby Tiara has remained in her collection of jewels ever since, as well.
7. The King George IV State Diadem
The King George IV State Diadem dates all the way back to 1820, when it was made by Royal goldsmiths named Rundell, Bridge and Rundell, for George IV’s official coronation. The Diadem was eventually inherited by Queen Elizabeth II, and it continues to remain in her private collection of jewels. The diadem consists of over thirteen hundred diamonds and one hundred and seventy pearls, amounting to a total weight of over three hundred and twenty five carats.
6. Queen Mother’s Necklace
The Queen Mother’s Necklace originally belonged to Queen Victoria, but it was eventually handed down as a gift to Queen Elizabeth II. While the weight of the prestigious Necklace has never been officially revealed, it is known to have around forty five large diamonds within it.
5. Prince Albert Sapphire Brooch
The Prince Albert Sapphire Brooch is among the wealthiest pieces in the Queen’s Collection, and was originally given to her by the Queen Mother, who in turn, was given it by Queen Victoria. Weighing in around twenty five carats, the Prince Albert Sapphire Brooch is today worth around four million pounds, although it is also thought it could be worth even more than that, by some people.
4. Queen Anne and Caroline Pearl Necklaces
When put together, the Queen Anne and Caroline Pearl Necklaces are worth over four million pounds, consisting of pearls and pearl clasps. The necklaces originally belonged to Queen Anne and Queen Caroline, as the names of the necklaces suggest. The two Queens kept both of the necklaces in their extensive collection, though they eventually began wearing larger and more expensive necklaces to coronations and events, as time went on. The Queen Anne and Caroline necklaces were given as gifts to Queen Elizabeth II, as a wedding present by her father in 1947, and she has kept them since.
3. Collet Necklace and Earrings
The Collet Necklace and Earrings were originally commissioned by Queen Victoria in 1858, to be made out of the diamonds from her personal collection. Queen Victoria wore the Collet Necklace and Earrings multiple times throughout her reign, and was often seen in her paintings and portraits. The necklace alone consists of almost thirty collet diamonds, and weighs over twenty two carats. The Collet Necklace and Earrings were eventually handed down to Queen Elizabeth II and she continues to own them today, but the fact that they were favored pieces owned and worn by Queen Victoria, make them among the most valuable gifts she has ever received.
2. Russian Kokoshnik Tiara
The Russian Kokoshink Tiara was originally given to Princess Alexandra of Wales in the year 1888, by Lady Salisbury, with Alexandra ordering the tiara to have a similar design and fashion to the kokoshnik, the head dress of a Russian girl. Lady Salisbury watched over the making of the Tiara by the Garrard Jewelers. The resulting product consisted of over sixty platinum bars and nearly five hundred diamonds. Each diamond alone is estimated to weigh more than three carats. The Russian Kokoshnik Tiara remained in Princess Alexandra’s collection for many years, until it was given as a gift to Queen Elizabeth II. Even today, the Russian Kokoshink Tiara is regarded as one of the most magnificent gifts bestowed to the Queen of England.
1. Cullinan III and IV
The Cullinan III and IV were two stones cut out of the Cullinan Diamond in 1905, among several that were. The Cullinan Diamond was discovered in South Africa (at the time a part of the British Empire) and gifted to Edward VII, as a birthday present. The two stones that were cut from the diamond weigh ninety four and sixty four carats, respectively. Elizabeth II was gifted the two Cullinans from Queen Mary, who made the stones into a brooch. The Cullinan III and IV stones are regarded as among the most valuable treasures in the entire world, worth around fifty million pounds when put together.