Now on with the tale, which happily contains no gruesome accidents or jewellery disasters!
On 8th September 1761, George III married Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz in the Chapel Royal at St. James's Palace. The ceremony was presided over by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Thomas Secker and the marriage was a long and eventful one, ended only by Charlotte's death in 1818.
|Queen Charlotte's Diamond Keeper Ring|
George presented Charlotte with a beautiful diamond ring to be worn alongside her wedding ring and inscribed within the band was Septr 8th 1761. The ring was a personal gift from the king and it was accompanied by bracelets, necklaces and earrings but it is the ring that appears most significant to Charlotte. From the day of her wedding to the day of her death, Charlotte never wore another ring on that finger, holding her wedding jewellery in such regard
Following Queen Charlotte's death, her jewels were divided amongst her daughters and many were sold on. The diamond ring, however, remained in the care of Charlotte, Princess Royal, and was later inherited by Queen Victoria. It remains in the Royal Collection, though I cannot help but wish it had stayed with Queen Charlotte at her death, but perhaps that's the romantic in me coming out.
I am pleased to relate that there was a happy ending to my own sorry story as the stones from my pulverised engagement ring went onto a new life as a beautiful necklace. Indeed, my gentleman was kind enough to present me with a new engagement ring too, which is now sitting happily alongside my wedding band on my happily recovered digit!
Life in the Georgian Court, true tales of 18th century royalty, is available at the links below.