If Diamonds Could Talk

Provenance. . . that precious word jewelers apply to storied treasures. The older the piece, the more likely it was to pick up tales along the way.

The very beautiful Queen Nazli lived a life of privilege at a time when monarchs ruled Egypt. Her husband King Fuad reigned over their domain in a lavish lifestyle at several palaces along with his wife, children and an enormous entourage. 

Pretty soon we'll get a peek into their rarified world through the auction of one of Nazli's iconic jewels; a jaw-dropping 600 diamond bib-style confection that Sotheby's New York will put on the auction block.

Here Nazli is seen wearing the necklace, plus the matching tiara custom designed for her by Van Cleef & Arpels and the dramatic chandelier earrings to finish the look.The pieces were commissioned for the occasion of Nazli's daughter's wedding in 1939 some 3 years after the King passed away. This was not just any wedding. Her daughter was marrying the Crown Prince of Iran. It was reported that Nazli literally dripped diamonds from head to toe at that historic ceremony.

Nazli did her duty by producing an heir to the throne, her only son pictured here with her 4 beautiful daughters, including the future bride of Iran's Shah..

One can only imagine the places this magnificent item went throughout the years. Nazli resettled in the United States by 1950 and sold off many of her treasured jewels as time went on. This piece went to the auction block in 1975 and retired into obscurity for decades.

Historians breathed a collective sigh of relief when it came up again for sale. Many such elaborate and historical pieces are taken apart and remade into modern items for today's lifestyle. Not this legendary piece though. Proceeds from the sale of this celebrated jewel will benefit a charitable foundation this time around. 


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