Hellenistic gold olive wreath diadem Circa 3rd Century BC
The diadem composed of sheet gold over a tubular core, decorated with several long spear-shaped leaves with impressed veins and delicate hollow gold fruits, all attached to the core with twisted gold wire, a composition of four larger leaves and four berries at the centre.
ROYAL JEWELLERY || The Rosenborg Kokoshnik TiaraMade in the 1930’s by the Danish jeweller Dragsted, The Rosenborg Kokoshnik Tiara was acquired by Prince Viggo, Count of Rosenborg for his American-born wife, Princess Viggo. As the couple didn’t have any children, the tiara was inherited by Prince and Princess Viggo’s sister-in-law, Princess Margaretha, who in return passed it on to her daughter-in-law, Countess Ruth of Rosenborg. Following her death, it was put on an auction at Bukowskis where the estimated value was placed at more than $200.000 but it did not sell. It is modelled after the traditional Russian headdress, the kokoshnik (hence the name), and consists of garnets and diamonds.
Greek Gold Wreath of Oak Leaves and Flowers, possibly from Attica, Greece, late 2nd - early 1st century BC
In ancient Greece, oak leaves symbolized wisdom, and were associated with Zeus, who according to Greek mythology made his decisions while resting in an oak grove.
Gold wreaths such as this one derive their form from wreaths of real leaves worn in religious ceremonies or given as prizes in athletic and artistic contests. Because of their fragility, gold wreaths were probably not meant to be worn. They were dedicated to the gods in sanctuaries and placed in graves as funerary offerings. Although known in earlier periods, gold wreaths became much more frequent in the Hellenistic age, probably due in large part to the greatly increased availability of gold in the Greek world following the eastern conquests of Alexander the Great.
Previously undiscovered photo of undocumented Russian Crown Jewels were recently discovered in the USGS library. The photo appear in a 1922 album called “Russian Diamond Fund,” that was uncovered in the rare book room of the library. This diadem was one of the four undocumented jewels.
Gold diadem of twisted ribbons with a Herakles knot
c.300-280 BC Said to be from the island of Mílos, Aegean Sea
Marking a moment of transition
This unusual and lovely diadem is made up of three long sheets of gold twisted to form ribbons on each side of a Herakles knot. The Herakles knot is found in Greek jewellery from the Mycenaean period, but became particularly popular in the fourth century BC. Its symbolism is closely connected with marriage, and the knot that tied the bride’s garment and was untied by the groom. In many cultures the tying or untying of knots marks moments of transition, whether from maiden to married woman or even from life to death. The untying of knots is also connected with the easing of childbirth.
Western Greek (Southern Italy or Sicily) c. 330-300 BC.
Detail: Gold diadem with elaborate filigree decoration and a small head of a woman in low relief.
The thickness of the sheet gold and the sturdiness of the object, together with traces of apparently ancient repairs to a break in the strap at the left corner of the pediment, indicate that this diadem was actually worn.