Queen Elizabeth, 93, wore a stunning tiara and eye-catching jewels as she greeted and mingled with members of the Diplomatic Corps, at a reception hosted at Buckingham Palace in London. The reception is an annual event for 1,000 guests including ambassadors, high commissioners and government officials.
The Queen was pictured wearing her favourite royal tiara – the Vladimir Tiara – which Meghan Markle was supposedly denied from wearing at her wedding.
The head-piece is one of the Queen’s go-to-pieces and over the years she has been pictured wearing it on numerous occasions.
The tiara, designed by an unknown Russian jewellery craftsman, consists of fifteen interlaces thick metal circles.
At the bottom of the tiara, the overlapping circles are attached to a semi-circular think band of metal, that form the circlet of the tiara.
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The Queen was pictured wearing her favourite royal tiara – the Vladimir Tiara – which Meghan Markle was supposedly banned from wearing at her wedding
At the top the overlapping circles are held together by a wavy snake-like band that intertwines the circles passing in and out of them.
The thick circles as well as the upper and lower bands are closely laden with round brilliant-cut diamonds, that impart the brilliant sparkle so characteristic of this tiara.
The beauty of the tiara was further enhanced by the swinging emerald drops or pendants with small diamond set mounts, positioned inside each circle, but hanging from the wavy band and not from the circle.
Tiaras are traditionally made of precious metals such as platinum, gold and silver, and the Vladamir Tiara appears to be made from either platinum or silver.
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The Vladimir Tiara was given to Marie of Mecklenburg-Schwerin when she married Grand Duke Vladimir Alexandrovich of Russia in 1897.
It came to the UK in 1917 when Grand Duchess Maria Pavlovna was advised to flee Russia after the revolution.
The tiara was smuggled out of Russia in a pair of Gladstone bags.
The piece was in a little disrepair, but was bought from Grand Duchess Maria Pavlovna’s daughter Grand Duchess Elena in 1921 by Queen Mary.
Vladimir Tiara: The head-piece is one of the Queen’s go-to-pieces and over the years she has been pictured wearing it on numerous occasions
Queen Mary, who was renowned for her collection of royal jewels, and took pride in superbly bejewelling herself for formal occasions had an intimate knowledge of jewellery and their designing, and decided that the “Vladimir Tiara” needed modification.
The original setting for the tiara included pearl drops instead of emerald one’s.
However, Queen Mary had royal jewellers Garrard & Co repair the gems and three years later had a set of 15 Cambridge emeralds attached to the stunning piece.
The Vladimir Tiara was inherited by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, in 1953, according to the last will left by Queen Mary.
Thus the “Vladimir Tiara” entered the personal jewelry collection of Her Majesty the Queen.
Her Majesty the Queen has been wearing this tiara on formal occasions since the time of her coronation in 1953.
Last year, it was rumoured that the Queen and Meghan Markle got into a disagreement, with claims that the Duchess of Sussex requested to wear the Vladimir Tiara to her wedding, and the Queen denying her request.
According to the Sun, in a book by reporter Robert Jobson it tells the story of the disagreement over the tiara.
A royal insider told the writer: “Meghan had her heart set on this tiara with emeralds and Prince Harry hit the roof when they were told it was impossible for her to wear it.
“The provenance of the tiara could not be established. There were concerns it could have come from Russia originally.
“There was a very heated exchange that prompted the Queen to speak to Harry. She said, ‘Meghan cannot have whatever she wants. She gets what tiara she’s given by me’.”
Meghan wore the Queen Mary Lozenge Tiara in the end instead.