|Provenance||Previously in the collection of Frances Lois, Countess of Rosse and her daughter in law Anne, Countess Rosse and thence by descent. The note which is pinned inside the box reads… "This brooch was made out of the earrings of the antique emerald and diamond parure of the Rosse family – by Lois Lady Rosse for the 1911 Coronation and also some extra diamonds were added in. (Designed by her father Sir Cecil Lister Kaye) To be entailed with the family emeralds."|
|Gemstones and Other Materials||2x briolette emeralds estimated to weigh a combined total of approximately 25cts |
2 x round faceted emeralds estimated to weigh a combined total of approximately 1ct
226 x old cut diamonds estimated to weigh a combined total of approximately 12cts
|Condition Report||Very fine|
|Setting||18ct gold and silver|
|Weight description||35 grams|
|Dimensions||Wingspan 12.3cm / 4.8" wide |
Body 7.3cm / 2.8" long
Earrings 2.5cm/ 1" long
This wonderful jewel was made by the Crown Jewellers Garrard & Co. for Frances, 5th Countess of Rosse to wear to the coronation of King George V and Queen Mary in 1911.
A coronation is a state occasion steeped in history and tradition and the jewels worn by the Peeresses to accompany their formal coronation robes reflect this. Parures of historic family jewels passed down through generations were de rigeur, topped off with the most important tiara each Peeress owned. To have a new jewel commissioned, particularly one of this size and design was likely unusual and would certainly have made a significant impact. The rich green emeralds no doubt proved a vibrant contrast to the deep red of the coronation robes and complimented the emerald necklace and tiara that Frances wore with it.
The dragonfly brooch is a truly spectacular jewel and would have attracted many an admiring glance, the tremblant setting causing it to flutter and catch the light with every movement she made. The countess had given Garrard a pair of Colombian emerald briolette drops to use which she had taken from a pair of earrings that were part of the Rosse family emerald parure. The clever design her father had devised meant that these beautiful drops, estimated to weigh approximately 25cts between them, could be detached from their place in the upper wings and put back into their original earrings.
In due course, the dragonfly brooch passed from Frances to her daughter-in-law Anne, 6th Countess of Rosse. The brooch was a favourite jewel of Anne’s and she wore it regularly. Images of her wearing the dragonfly show it on evening dresses, cocktail dresses and coats, this was a woman with a passion for both jewellery and fashion. It is thanks to her that we know the details regarding the commissioning of this piece. Her handwritten note on the provenance of this unique jewel remains pinned inside the box in which the dragonfly rests.