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The Imperial Twelve Monogram Egg

The Twelve Monogram Egg was given by Nicholas II to his mother, the Dowager Empress Maria Fedorovna, for the first Easter after the death of of his father, Tsar Alexander III. Fabergé had been working on another Egg for Alexander to present to his wife, but Alexander’s sudden death in October 1894 brought such sadness to the family that it was felt that the Egg being made as his gift was too frivolous, too gay, not sombre enough to reflect the overriding sadness felt by Nicholas and Alexandra. Fabergé, always sensative to the moods of the monarchy, quickly designed and produced another Egg for the occasion and this is the Egg. It is the only Egg that took less than a year to design and produce, having taken only 6 months from the decision of Fabergé to the completion of the Egg.

The Egg consists of 12 panels, six above the opening and 6 below the opening, the upper panels bearing the Cyrillic monogram of the Dowager Empress and the lower panels bearing the Cyrillic monogram of the late Alexander III. The ground is deep blue, covered with gold arabesques in a design that frames the monogram and this is repeated in each of the panels. The monograms each have the Imperial Crown above them with both the crown and the monogram diamond-studded in the original.

Our reproduction is midnight blue Limoges porcelain with each panel framed in chased gold and all monograms done in gold enamel, the gems indicated in white enamel relief. Our Egg is 8.5 inches tall standing on a footed chased gold metal base. The clasp of the Egg is the Romanov Double Headed Eagle in gold plated metal.

In the original the interior of the Egg was covered in velvet and the surprise rested on it. What the surprise was in unknown. It went missing when the Egg was confiscated by the Revolutionists. Our Egg opens to reveal a gold plated sterling silver plinth with a replica of the Imperial crown sitting on it. The crown is 2.5 inches by 2 inches in size. It is studded with bands of crystals and topped by a cross on an orb in gold. The crown lifts off and beneath it is a tiny gold stand holding a Lapis Lazuli Egg suspended from a gold plated sterling silver bale. The Lapis Egg is removable and can be worn on a ribbon or a chain.

The original Egg is currently in the Marjorie Merriweather Post Collection at her former home, now the Hillwood Museum, in Washington, D. C.

Our price: $6500.00.

The Egg comes with complete documentation, nested in a deep blue velvet case with gold plated hardware.

 

 

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