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Magical Faberge flower valued at £1 million – Antiques Roadshow – BBC One

Magical Faberge flower valued at £1 million – Antiques Roadshow – BBC One


We call it the regimental jewel. The regiment, the Worcestershire Yeomanry,
later to become the Queen’s own Worcestershire Hussars, was formed in 1794 to protect these shores against a Napoleonic invasion. It was agreed that the regiment should serve
only within the United Kingdom. However, in 1899, when the Boer War was going badly, it was decided
that some of the Yeomanry, as volunteers, would be mobilised. And when they left the
shores, the countess of Dudley, whose husband, the Earl of Dudley, was a member of the regiment – he was second in command – she presented each and every soldier that went out with a
sprig of pear blossom, worked in silk, that they were to wear in their hat as a reminder of
the county that they had left, i.e. the pear blossom emblem of Worcestershire. When they returned
in 1903, she presented this sprig of pear blossom, manufactured by Faberge. It’s a lovely
piece. It certainly is a lovely piece. This looks for all the world like a glass vase.
And there’s a stratagem here that it’s filled with water, and this is the meniscus, the top
of the water, but in fact, it isn’t. It’s a solid block, which is apparently glass but
it’s certainly not – it’s stone. It’s rock crystal. It’s icy cold even on this hot day
and it’s immensely difficult to carve – it’s much, much harder than glass. And then the
magic is to make it look as if the sprig is supported in this, so it’s drilled down into
the rock crystal to receive the stalk, and the stalk is made of gold. And it’s almost
as if we can see from time to time that new buds are going to blossom on here. That would
be quite surreal, wouldn’t it? And then the flowers are made of enamelled silver and tiny
silver stamens but in the centre there’s a dewdrop of diamond, glinting in the sunshine
here. And the leaves are made of Siberian Jade, from the Ural mountains. And then we
have the original fitted box, which is made of holly wood – literally the wood of the holly
tree, from Siberia. And then, just to get the message across she probably asked Faberge
to put a triumphant laurel here in green gold tied with the red-gold bow. That was the battle
honour that was awarded to them in South Africa. That’s very good. It is recorded there. That’s
why we think it’s 1904 because that was when they received the battle honour, South Africa.
Well, it’s absolutely bang on for date for the object because some of the best things
from Faberge are made in the 20th century in the age of the motor car, the telephone
and electricity. And here we have something that is redolent of the distance past because
it’s a such shrieking pitch of perfection and luxury. And it’s an utterly breathtaking
object. So give me some impression of what the pear blossom means in this regiment, to
you. I think when it was presented by Lady Dudley, she did it to recognise the sacrifice
of those soldiers that didn’t come back from the Boer War and those that were injured.
I think it’s a focal point for the younger soldiers, soldiers such as me that are way past their
sell by date. I just think it’s this focal point from what has happened years ago that
we still on occasions look back to but it’s important that we also look forward. I think
it provides that link for all the different ages of soldiers that have soldiered with
the regiment and are intending in the future to soldier with the regiment. It still comes
out on dinner nights when the officers of the squadron and the regiment are assembled.
It’s perhaps suffered over the years being stuffed under the bed on occasions at the
end of the evening or missed the odd bread roll. It’s making me utterly breathless because
I find Faberge things on the Antiques Roadshow but nothing of this scale. I can tell you
that the size of the object, the sophistication of the object, the provenance of the object
brings it very, very close to only two other flower studies in the United Kingdom, which
are in the Royal Collection. Given the qualifications I already put on this object, it is a towering
masterpiece of the goldsmith’s art by the most famous goldsmith of the 20th century.
So I’m going to tell you, in my opinion, that this is worth a million pounds. Goodness gracious.
Well, I’m supposed to say now, it’s not for sale. It certainly isn’t for sale. I’m just
the custodian. Well, that is the rub, isn’t it. It’s not for sale. A million pounds for
that tiny flower. Wow. Good job it’s well protected.


Reader Comments

  1. That probably won't be getting stuffed under any more beds, but will be secures in the company safe.

  2. It's only expensive because of diamonds , silver and gold. not because it's pretty or difficult to craft

  3. اتمنى لو هناك احدا يشرح باللغة العربية.فالتحفة راءعة جدا

  4. I remember this being on tv and I wasn’t paying attention to it but as soon as I said £1million I just gasped and looked to see what on earth it was 😂

  5. To have something made buy one of the greatest rulers Carl Faberge was just breathtaking Geoffrey Munn says it's worth a million pound and spot on because in my opinion it's the greatest object ever found on the Antiques Roadshow

  6. It's a beautiful piece, but I would totally be selling that. Money that could go to my family and give me a better life.

  7. nice object and fuck those shitbags getting glassy eyed over south africa and all the bullshit wars fought over the years.

  8. I bet the dead soldiers family would like a slice of that . but hey dead men dont matter to the living . that greedy little bastard

  9. The Countess of Dudley, showing why Britain was able, with such a small army, to inspire them to fight, beyond their natural means. The British got a pasting in South Africa against the Boers, but it didn't go to waste, check out why in 1914 wehn 100,000 Contempible Soldiers held overwhelming odds of Germans in the early days of WW1. Countess Dudley (and the Earl) come across as being for the 'regular soldier', presenting the silk sprig of Pear Blossom, would mean a lot at the time, especially to the down trodden squaddie in the field. Geoff Munn is one of my Favourite Antique Roadshow experts, but on this I suspect he got it wrong? It's a one off, you name a price, and £1 million to me is minimum and on a bad day, in Grimsby lol.

  10. It's not for sale my arse. I bet as soon as they heard that valuation, they bought their son a house, booked a cruise, bought 2 cars and a set of ornimental whips for Margaret

  11. This is so magnificent beauty it's a true pleasure to have been able see it.. Thank you Antique Road show for your interesting educational information 💕✌💖

  12. The lady in the back, with short blonde hair and glasses reacted with jealousy at hearing the exorbitant amount. Compare her facial expression to other's

  13. The soldiers need to work on their poker faces – ha!

    Seriously though, what a gorgeous piece and an utterly moving backstory.

  14. I got really pissed when this old guy started touching/jabbing a piece of history and luxury, such poor behavior.

  15. I love this show always have done but I absolutely despise it when all the old croaks in the background gasp when they find out the value of the object and act all over the top!!

  16. He must have known it was worth a fortune – I doubt the two soldiers were standing there for decoration !

  17. Kinda weird to be proud of an item made to commemorate colonialism and a lost war 😂

  18. Don't really see the point of organisations bringing things in! Like the miniature angel of the north that was bought in. The Louvre might bring the Mona Lisa in next. Wow that's worth a bit!

  19. Jon Snow remarked hed never seen so many white people in one place at a Brexit march. Obviously never watched an episode of this middle class tripe on the BBC. Jesus any diversity in the audience or owners??

  20. He flexxed on antiques roadshow so hard. He didnt even want to sell it. He just wanted to show it off and then dip out. He was all like "I'll leave you to your china plates biartch"

  21. In 1992 I went to the Faberge exhibition in London – I came away thinking "everything I own is SHIT – NO, everything I have ever seen IN MY LIFE…. IS SHIT"

    It transported me to a level of perfection I simply never knew existed before that.

  22. How poignant and tragic .The Anglo Boer War. How ironic the flowers and stem are crafted from diamonds and gold , the very things that war was fought over. Gold and diamonds, the stuff of dreams or the stuff of nightmares depending the victor or prisoner . In the case of South Africa it brought so many woes if not the root of all ensuing problems and injustices, the discovery of gold and diamonds…..

  23. I had a woman,bring a fabergae,flower arrangement,in a basket,it was hard to find the stamp,that woman was so thankful, I showed her who made it,that was in the 90's,in republican,held Mitch McConnell territory, her smile made my day,thank you, wherever u r.

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