The original commission for most
of the animals, placed by King Edward VII of
England in 1907, was for a large assortment
of animals. Many of these were sculpted from
life at Sandringham, the country estate of
King Edward and his Queen, Alexandra (Alexandra,
you may recall, was the sister to Dowager Empress
Maria Fedorovna, mother of Tsar Nicholas II).
Queen Alexandra was inordinately fond of animals
and actually kept a zoo at Sandringham in addition
to her beloved dogs, horses and farm
animals of the estate.
In the Queen's Collection there are three
bulls, and the bull shown above was almost
certainly based on one of the wax models that
were made at Sandringham by sculptors sent
there by Fabergé. After completing the
models, the models were returned to Russia
and the workshops of Fabergé permitted
the stone carvers to work directly from these
When the carvings were completed, they were
returned to the London branch of Fabergé and
there the sale was finalized.
The materials used for the carvings were chosen
by the sculptors generally based on the color
of the stone being as close to lifelike as
possible. Russia had enormous deposits of these
stones in the Ural Mountains and Fabergé used
them to great advantage.
Handling the animal above, one can feel the
hipbone protrusions along with various other
body details including the loosely hung neck
skin. The eyes are diamonds set in gold bezels.
The Bull is 8 inches from horn tip to tail
tip and stands 4 inches tall at the shoulder.
Our price: $1200.00.