Thursday, May 30, 2013

Mastery of Design: Queen Victoria’s Charm Bracelet, 1840

"Locket" Bracelet
Gold Enamel Hair
Presented to Queen Victoria by Prince Albert
November 24, 1840
Crown Copyright
The Royal Collection
We know, of course, that one of Prince Albert’s greatest joys was giving jewelry to Queen Victoria. He’d often create reasons to present her with tokens of his affection. However, in 1840, a definite reason presented itself with the birth of their first child, Victoria, the Princess Royal.

Three days after the birth of Victoria, on November 24, 1840, Prince Albert presented his wife with this simple chain bracelet engraved with the date. Hanging from the bracelet was a heart-shaped gold locket, adorned with bright enamel. The locket contained a lock of their first child’s hair. Prince Albert added an enameled locket to the bracelet on the event of the birth of each of their subsequent children—each containing a lock of the infant’s hair.

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