The tiara worn by the late Princess Diana on her wedding day will go on display in London this summer for the first time since the 1960s as part of a landmark exhibit of aristocratic tiaras to celebrate Queen Elizabeth’s Platinum Jubilee, which marks her 70th year on the British throne.
The Prince and Princess of Wales return to Buckingham Palace by carriage after their wedding, 29th … [+]
The Spencer tiara that Diana wore for her July 1981 wedding to Prince Charles will be on display at Sotheby’s London showroom from May 28 to June 15 alongside a collection of other royal tiaras, including pieces worn by Queen Victoria and Joséphine Bonaparte.
Diana–who came from a long line of British aristocrats herself–opted to wear a tiara from her own family instead of borrowing one from the Queen for her wedding at St. Paul’s Cathedral in London, which was televised to an audience estimated at 750 million.
She wore the Spencer tiara, which is believed to have been initially created in 1767 and was passed down through the family for centuries (and worn by many of Diana’s female relatives during their own weddings) before being mounted in the 1930s by Garrad jewelry house into the design that’s well known today.
The garland-style tiara has a large heart-shaped motif in the center flanked by stars and flowers all set with diamonds and was worn by Diana beyond her wedding day at state functions through the 1980’s, including on her high-profile royal tours of Australia and India.
Today, Diana’s brother Charles owns the tiara, which was most recently worn by Diana’s niece Celia McCorquodale at her 2018 wedding.
Diana at a reception at the Crest International Hotel in Brisbane, Australia, wearing the Spencer … [+]
Tim Graham Photo Library via Getty Images
The royal tiaras are going on display at Sotheby’s part of a wider exhibit to celebrate the 70th anniversary of Elizabeth’s coronation. The auction house will also display several rare royal portraits that remain in private collections and are rarely available to be seen by the public, including a pop-art portrait of Elizabeth by Andy Warhol and one of the iconic Armada portraits of Queen Elizabeth I.
Diana is among the most popular figures in British history, despite her messy divorce from Charles in 1996 and her tragic death in a Paris car accident the following year. In 2002, she was named by voters in a BBC poll as the third-greatest Briton of all time, behind only Prime Minister Winston Churchill–a distant cousin of Diana’s, through her Spencer side–and Isambard Kingdom Brunel, an engineer who played a key role in the country’s industrial revolution. Diana beat out other famous British figures like Charles Darwin, William Shakespeare, Isaac Newton and Elizabeth I. A statue of Diana was unveiled at her former home, Kensington Palace, on what would have been her 60th brithday last year by her sons, Princes William and Harry. Last year, Diana’s wedding dress was put on display at the museum within Kensington Palace.
Diana and Queen Elizabeth attend the opening of Parliament in London, November 1982. Diana is … [+]
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