Set with emeralds, sapphires, rubies, pearls, 365 rose cut diamonds and a whopping amethyst, the cross-embellished orb (seen in the Queen’s left hand) was created to represent Christ’s authority over the world, and has been used for every coronation since 1661.
A symbol of the monarch’s role as head of state, the scepter was created in 1661, and it contains the largest cut diamond in the world. The 3,106 carat Cullinan diamond was discovered in 1905, and the fist-sized stone was the biggest ever found. After it was gifted to King Edward VI it was broken down into several pieces. The largest – the 530.2 carat Cullinan I, also known as The Star of Africa – was set at the top of the scepter, while the other Cullinan were used mostly in brooches.
It may not be the biggest, oldest or most expensive in the Queen’s collection, but her engagement ring is sure to be the piece of jewelry closest to her heart. It is made up of a 3 carat brilliant cut diamond with smaller stones either side, and all were taken from a tiara that had once belonged to Prince Philip’s mother.
Nobody knows how old this whopping 106 carat diamond actually is, but it is recorded as far back as 1300, in a curse from an old Hindu text. Afterwards the jewel moved around India, Persia and Afghanistan as a spoil of war, before being gifted to Queen Victoria. She wore it in a brooch, and it was then passed down to Queen Mary, Queen Alexandra and Queen Elizabeth (the Queen Mother) to be worn in their Queen Consort crowns. It currently sits in the Queen Mother’s crown in the Tower of London.