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Duchess of Windsor Gem-set Cross Bracelet

Gem-set Cross Bracelet of Duchess of Windsor.
Gem-set Cross Bracelet of Duchess of Windsor. Photo courtesy: Sothebys

Stunning piece of jewelry and an important part of the Collection of Duchess of Windsor: Cross Bracelet. The chain bracelet is spectacle-set with circular- and brilliant-cut Diamonds and suspends nine gem-set Latin crosses to a navette-shaped clasp.
 
This jewel was worn regularly by the Duchess of Windsor and can be seen in many contemporary photographs. The most notable one is of her wedding where she is seen adorning the special ornament on her wrist. The images clearly showing Wallis Simpson wearing the crosses caused intense speculation as to the true nature of the relationship between her and King Edward VIII.

Each of the nine crosses has a significant importance of its own:

Our marriage cross
Cross set with calibré-cut Sapphires, Emeralds, one similarly cut Ruby and a baguette Diamond, inscribed and dated: Our marriage Cross Wallis 3.VI.37 David.
The cross commemorates the marriage of The Duke of Windsor and Wallis Simpson. The couple were married on 3rd June 1937 in France.

God Save the King for Wallis
Cross set with calibré-cut Aquamarines, inscribed and dated: God save the King for Wallis. 16.VII.36.
This inscription refers to an incident on 16th July 1936, when King Edward VIII was riding in a procession on Constitution Hill after presenting new colors to the Gaurds. He was threatened by an Irish Journalist with a loaded revolver.

Appendectomy Cross
Cross set with calibré-cut Amethyst, inscribed and dated: Appendectomy Cross Wallis 31-VIII-44 David.
The Duchess of Windsor was ailing for some months in 1944 left Nassau and was admitted into Roosevelt Hospital, New York. She underwent an operation for appendicitis with complications on 31st August there. 
   
X Ray Cross
Cross set with calibré-cut Emeralds, inscribed and dated: X Ray Cross Wallis – David 10.7.36.   
This cross was presented only a few days before King Edward VIII was threatened with a loaded revolver. Mrs Simpson wrote from Fort Belvedere on 1st August 1936, to her Aunt Bessie giving details of her state of health: 'I had myself X-rayed from head to toes, they found a healed ulcer scar."
   
The Kings Cross God bless WE
Cross set with baguette Diamonds, inscribed and dated: The Kings (sic) Cross God bless WE 1-3-36.
This inscription probably refers to the date of Mrs Simpson's departure for Paris on 1st March 1939. After six exhausting weeks of the new reign, she sought with her friend 'Foxy' Gwynne, a few days relaxation. It may be construed from the sentiment expressed on the charm that the King was not exactly pleased at her disappearance. He was still in mourning for his father and heavily burdened with unfamiliar duties .

St Wolfgang
Cross set with calibré-cut Rubies, inscribed and dated : Wallis – David St Wolfgang 22-9-35.
This belonged to the Duke and was a necklace with three cross pendants.One of these was a Rubies set Latin cross Pendant, inscribed and dated on the reverse: 22.9.35 David - Wallis St Wolfgang. 
   
Get Well Cross
Cross set with calibré-cut Yellow Sapphires, inscribed and dated : "Get Well" Cross Wallis Sept. 1944 David.
The sentiments were same as that of the Appendectomy cross. 
   
Wallis-David 23-6-35
Cross set with calibré-cut Sapphires, inscribed and dated : Wallis – David 23-6-35.   
Edward's Pendant designed as a Latin cross one set with Sapphires, the reverse inscribed and dated: 23.6.35 was a birthday gift from Wallis to commemorate his forty-first birthday.
   
WE are too
Cross in Platinum, inscribed and dated: WE are too (sic) 25-XI-34.
The inscription 'We are too 25-XI-34' is a punning allusion to Mrs. Simpson and the Prince of Wales'(WE) feeling for one another: WE(Wallis and Edward) are also in love, and WE too are in love. This is of particular significance as the Prince's brother, George, Duke of Kent, was married a few days later on 29 November, 1934, to Princess Marina of Greece, at Westminster Abbey.


The Duchess of Windsor in 1937, wearing the gem and diamond cross bracelet by Cartier
The Duchess of Windsor in 1937, wearing the gem and diamond cross bracelet by Cartier. Photo courtesy: Sothebys

Really amazing how much pieces of jewelry can capture moments of your life! This one is a spectacular example for the same. Do you have any such pieces with fragments of your life in it? Share your comments and reactions below.




Best regards
Sambhav Karnawat
K.K. Exports
The Ruby KingTM
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3 comments:

Personalised Jewellery has become very well-known in previous few decades, but it’s certainly not a new concept. In fact, customized jewelry goes back centuries to days when people designed themselves in pendants, wristbands and ear-rings made from plant seeds, seashells and other ornaments discovered in characteristics. Its a perfect gift to give some one.

This gem-set cross bracelet is looking great, I don't know if i will be able to find it anywhere on the internet, would love to buy it for my girlfriend.

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