Imperial Fabergé eggs – the ultimate Easter Egg

770px-Tsarevich_(Fabergé_egg)_and_surprise

In 1827, an ambitious 24-year-old Russian took over his father’s jewellery business, determined to make it the talk of imperial St Petersburg.

Thirteen years later, having gained a reputation for his craftsmanship and creativity, Peter Carl Fabergé received the ultimate seal of approval: a commission from Tsar Alexander III for a bejewelled Easter egg – a gift for his young bride, Maria Feodorovna.

The white enamel “hen” egg, containing a gold yolk, gold hen, tiny replica of the imperial crown and ruby pendant, was a hit, and Fabergé went on to create a new egg for the Tsar every Easter, as well as countless other pieces.

Each egg took around a year to complete, contained a “surprise” and was designed in secret, with not even the Tsar privy to its design until it was hand-delivered by Fabergé.

When Alexander died, his son, Tsar Nicholas II, continued the tradition, commissioning two eggs each Easter – one for his mother and one for his own Tsarina, Alexandra Feodorovna – bringing the total to 50.

In October 1917, the Bolsheviks seized power and the Tsar and his family fled to Ekaterinburg where they were executed by firing squad the following July.

1913a

The Russian Imperial family.

In 2014, a scrap metal dealer bought an ornament at a junk auction which he intended to melt down for its gold. It turned out to be a Fabergé egg which he reportedly sold for $30 million.

 

 

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