Sweden’s new source, The Local
, reports that Swedish officials announced Thursday the discovery of a “treasure trove” of jewels belonging to the family of Tsar Nicholas II of Russia. The jewel-encrusted cufflinks and gold and silver cigarette cases made by Fabergé and Bolin are valued at $2.8 million.
Russian Peter Carl Fabergé
and the Swedish Bolin family were court jewelers to five Russian tsars and three Swedish kings.
Following the 1917 Russian revolution, Tsar Nicholas II’s aunt, Grand Duchess Maria Pavlovna the Elder, had these Romanov family jewels whisked away to safety at the Swedish embassy in Saint Petersburg in 1918.
A Russian news
source quotes Professor Krister Valbek, who studied the items, as saying, “We have discovered a large quantity of jewels which were brought to what was known as the Swedish mission in Petrograd [now St. Petersburg] in November 1918 by a confidant of Grand Duchess Maria Pavlovna."
At some point, the historic and quite valuable objects made their way to the Swedish Foreign Ministry’s storage rooms in Stockholm. Forgotten for almost 90 years, the items were actually found last year when the foreign ministry moved its archives.
Maria Pavlovna died in France in 1920 without telling her family the jewelry had been smuggled to Sweden.
The jewels were returned to members of the Romanov family, and some items will be auctioned off at Sotheby’s
in London this November.
Sotheby’s representative Marcus Linell said in a statement
Unknown for generations until their recent rediscovery, the objects, some of which still contain evidence of use by the Romanovs -- remnants of tobacco and period Bogdanov cigarettes -- truly evoke the grandeur and sublime taste of their original owners.
The Romanov Dynasty
began in 1613 with the election of Mikhail Romanov and ended in 1918 with the murder of Nicholas II. Russia's last tsar, Nicholas II, along with his family and several servants were killed by the Bolsheviks in the Urals.