Lot 823. A diamond silver and gold maid of honor cypher, Russia, circa 1855-1860, number 59; 3 in. (7.6 cm.) high, with crown. Estimate USD 20,000 - USD 30,000. Price realised USD 52,500. © Christie's Images Ltd 2020.
In the form of the Cyrillic initials ‘MA’ for Empress Maria Alexandrovna (1824-1880) and Dowager Empress Alexandra Feodorovna (1798-1860), set with old and rose-cut diamonds mounted in silver-topped gold, surmounted by a hinged diamond-set Imperial crown, with suspension loop and pin, apparently unmarked, numbered ‘59’ on reverse.
Provenance: Anonymous sale; Christie’s, Geneva, 17 November 1981, lot 183.
The James and Marilynn Alsdorf Collection, Chicago.
Note: The initials refer to Empress Maria Alexandrovna, wife of Alexander II, and to the Dowager Empress Alexandra Feodorovna, wife of Nicholas I. A lady-in-waiting serving for both Empresses had the cypher brooch with their two interlaced initials.
Christie's. Sacred and Imperial: The James and Marilynn Alsdorf Collection Part I, New York, 24 September 2020