The monarch sending messages to mark significant birthdays and anniversaries is a tradition dating back to 1917, when those celebrating their 100th birthday or 60th wedding anniversary were sent a telegram of good wishes from King George V.
When Queen Elizabeth II sadly passed in September 2022, the Palace suspended sending cards. When the official mourning period came to an end, new cards needed designing and printing, so it wasn’t until October that the tradition continued.
King Charles and Camilla’s card initially featured a photo of the royal couple that was taken in the summer of 2018, though this has been changed recently and it now features a formal portrait of the couple taken during the first state banquet of the monarch’s reign.
During the King’s meeting with President Volodymyr Zelenskyy of Ukraine at Buckingham Palace last month, a previously unseen photo of King Charles and Camilla was displayed on a table behind them.
The image appeared to be a formal portrait of the couple taken when they hosted their first state visit – for President Cyril Ramaphosa of the Republic of South Africa – since stepping into their new roles as reigning monarchs following the death of Queen Elizabeth II a couple of months prior.
During the President’s state visit, King Charles held his first state banquet as King and the royal ladies in particular dazzled guests.
Camilla paid tribute to Queen Elizabeth II by wearing her Belgian Sapphire Tiara – the tiara was refashioned from a 19th century necklace once owned by Princess Louise of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha and perfectly matches the late monarchs King George VI Victorian Suite, which Camilla was also wearing.
Gifted to Queen Elizabeth II by her Father on her wedding day in 1947, the King George VI Victorian Suite was undoubtedly among the late monarchs most meaningful jewels.
The sapphire and diamond cluster line necklace originally featured 18 sapphires, sat on a gradient, ranging from 8 to 30cts, before Queen Elizabeth II redesigned it in 1952 – the late monarch removed four of the sapphire clusters from the back and re-modelled and reset one of larger stones from the front, to create a beautiful pendant for the necklace. Sometime during the ’60s, she also commissioned a matching bracelet to accompany the set.
Also featuring a pair of sapphire earrings that look to be 15ct, the King George VI Victorian Suite is likely to be worth £5,000,000.
Our experts estimate the Belgian Sapphire Tiara to be worth £5,000,000 – meaning that in the photo on the front of King Charles and Camilla’s card, she’s wearing £10,000,000 worth of Queen Elizabeth II’s jewels.
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