Queen Mary’s Crown has been removed from display at the Tower of London for modification work ahead of the Coronation of His Majesty The King and Her Majesty The Queen Consort on Saturday, 6th May 2023. Queen Mary’s Crown will be used for the Coronation of The Queen Consort at Westminster Abbey.
The choice of Queen Mary’s Crown by Her Majesty is the first time in recent history that an existing crown will be used for the Coronation of a Consort instead of a new commission being made, in the interests of sustainability and efficiency. Some minor changes and additions will be undertaken by the Crown Jeweller, in keeping with the longstanding tradition that the insertion of jewels is unique to the occasion, and reflects the Consort’s individual style.
These changes will in particular pay tribute to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, as the Crown will be reset with the Cullinan III, IV and V diamonds. The diamonds were part of Queen Elizabeth II’s personal jewellery collection for many years and were often worn by Her late Majesty as brooches.
The Cullinan diamonds have been set into Queen Mary’s Crown on previous occasions. Cullinan III and IV were set temporarily in the Crown for the 1911 Coronation, and the Cullinan V was inserted when the Crown was worn as a regal circlet at King George VI’s Coronation in 1937.
In addition, four of the Crown’s eight detachable arches will be removed to create a different impression to when the Crown was worn by Queen Mary at the 1911 Coronation.
St Edward’s Crown, which will be used for the Coronation of His Majesty The King, has now returned to public display at the Tower of London following the completion of modification work.
Queen Mary's Crown
Queen Mary’s Crown was made by Garrard’s for the 1911 coronation and was commissioned by Queen Mary, the consort of King George V.
The design was inspired by Queen Alexandra’s Crown of 1902. Like Queen Alexandra’s Crown, it can be worn without the arches in the form of a regal circlet, which Queen Mary wore for the Coronation of her son, King George VI, in 1937.
This is the first time a Queen Consort’s Crown has been re-used since the 18th century, when Queen Caroline, consort of George II, wore Mary of Modena’s crown.