The View from England: Famous gems being both flaunted and hidden – by Chris Hinde (Northern Miner – April 20, 2023)

By now you should have received your invitation to the coronation of Charles III and his wife, Camilla, as king and queen of the United Kingdom and other Commonwealth realms. If you are at Westminster Abbey on May 6 (or watching, having mislaid your invitation) you will see a sparkling parade, but not the Koh-i-noor diamond.

One of the world’s most famous gems, the 106 carat Koh-i-noor (Persian for ‘Mountain of Light’) will not be used by Camilla. Instead, Queen Mary’s crown will be modified using diamonds from Queen Elizabeth II’s personal collection, including three of the stones cut from the largest gem-quality diamond ever found (South Africa’s 3,106 carat Cullinan).

This will allow Buckingham Palace to sidestep the controversy surrounding a gem acquired during the age of Empire (with Afghanistan, India, Iran and Pakistan all claiming ownership).

Charles will be the 40th monarch to be crowned at Westminster Abbey since 1066, but this is a slimmed-down version compared with his mother’s lavish ‘do’ in 1953. In a break with tradition, however, Charles is inviting other royals. Crowned heads from Europe will include (according to Tatler magazine); Philippe of Belgium, Anne-Marie of Greece, Grand-Duke Henri of Luxembourg, Albert II of Monaco, Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands, Felipe VI of Spain and Carl XVI of Sweden.

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