Twelve Monograms

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Twelve Monograms/Alexander III Portraits Fabergé egg
Twelve Monogram (Fabergé egg).jpg
Year delivered 1896
Current owner
Individual or institution Hillwood Museum
Design and materials
Surprise missing

The Twelve Monograms egg also known as the Alexander III Portraits egg is a jewelled Easter egg made under the supervision of the Russian jeweller Peter Carl Fabergé in 1896, for Tsar Nicholas II of Russia. It was presented by Nicholas II to his mother, the Dowager Empress Maria Feodorovna.

The Twelve Monograms/ Alexander III Portraits Egg was the second Fabergé egg given by Tsar Nicholas to his mother.

The egg is one of four commemorating Alexander III; the other three are the missing Empire Nephrite (1902) and Alexander III Commemorative (1909) eggs and the Alexander III Equestrian egg (1910).[1]

It is currently held in the Hillwood Museum in Washington, D.C. as part of the Marjorie Merriweather Post Collection.[2]

Surprise[edit]

The surprise for this egg is missing. It is believed that this egg contained six miniatures of Emperor Alexander III painted on an ivory background and mounted with sapphires.

Craftsmanship[edit]

Each panel of the egg contains a Cyrillic cipher of Alexander III and Maria Fedorovna, set and crowned in diamonds, set against the dark blue enamel with a design of red gold, rose-cut diamonds, portrait diamonds and velvet lining. It is covered by six panels each divided by bands set with rose-cut diamonds and decorated with the Imperial crown and Imperial monograms (MF) "Maria Fyodorovna" and (AIII) "Alexander III". Each monogram appears six times, with Maria's monogram appearing on the top half of the egg and Alexander's appearing on the bottom.

For a long time this egg was thought to have been the 1892 gift for Maria and Alexander's 25th wedding anniversary. It was also incorrectly believed to be the Imperial Easter Egg of 1895.

References[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • Lowes, Will; McCanless, Christel Ludewig (2001). Fabergé Eggs: A Retrospective Encyclopedia. Scarecrow Press. ISBN 978-0-8108-3946-5. 
  • Odom, Anne and Arend, Liana Paredes (1998). A Taste for Splendor: Russian Imperial and European Treasures from the Hillwood Museum. Alexandria, VA: Art Services International. ISBN 9780965495820
  • Odom, Anne and Salmond, Wendy R. eds. (2009). Treasures into Tractors: The Selling of Russia's Cultural Heritage, 1918-1938. Washington, D.C.: University of Washington Press. ISBN 9781931485074
  • Rubin Stuart, Nancy (1995). American Empress: The Life and Times of Marjorie Merriweather Post. New York: Villard. ISBN 0-679-41347-2. 

External links[edit]