• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 7442


    12 December 2007, London, King Street

  • Lot 178


    Price Realised  


    Designed as a series of old-cut diamond scrollwork motifs with trefoil spacers to the fine-link neckchain, mounted in silver and gold, circa 1865, 43.0 cm long

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    Louise Auguste Wilhelmine Amalie (10 March 1776 - 19 July 1810), Queen of Prussia, was born in Hanover, where her father, Karl of Mecklenburg-Strelitz, was Field Marshal of the household brigade. Her mother was Princess Friederike Caroline Luise of Hesse-Darmstadt. Her paternal grandparents were Charles Louis Frederick of Mecklenburg-Strelitz and Elizabeth Albertine, Princess of Saxe-Hildburghausen. Queen Charlotte, royal consort of King George III of the United Kingdom, was her paternal aunt.

    In 1793, Louise met the Crown Prince of Prussia, afterwards King Frederick William III. Deeply impressed by her beauty and nobility of character, Frederick William duly proposed and they were married on 24 December of the same year. As Queen of Prussia she commanded universal respect and affection, and nothing in Prussian history is more admired than the dignity and unflinching courage with which she bore the sufferings inflicted on her and her family during the war between Prussia and France.

    After the battle of Jena she went with her husband to Königsberg, and when the battles of Eylau and Friedland had placed Prussia at the absolute mercy of France, she made a personal appeal to Napoleon I of France at his headquarters in Tilsit, but without success. Early in 1808 she accompanied the king from Memel to Königsberg, whence, towards the end of the year, she visited St. Petersburg, returning to Berlin on 23 December 1809.

    During the war Napoleon attempted to destroy the Queen's reputation, but the only effect of his charges in Prussia was to make her more deeply beloved. On 19 July 1810 she died in her husband's arms, while visiting her father in Strelitz. She was buried in the garden of the palace at Charlottenburg, where a mausoleum, containing a fine recumbent statue by Rauch, was built over her grave. In 1840, her husband was buried by her side.

    The couple had nine children, of whom Frederick William IV of Prussia (1795 - 1861) first suceeded his father to the throne, reigning as King of Prussia from 1840 to 1861, succeeded by his brother Wilhelm I of Prussia (1797 - 1888) who became King of Prussia and the first German Emperor (1871 - 1888).
    Their eldest daughter, Charlotte (1798 - 1860), married Tsar Nicholas I of Russia and as Tsarina she was also known as Alexandra Feodorovna Romanova.

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    Louise Auguste Wilhelmine Amalie (10 March 1776-19 July 1810), Queen of Prussia

    Her Highness Princess Saxe-Altenburg, probably Princes Charlotte (b. 1899) or Princess Elisabeth (b. 1903)

    The necklace was subsequently sold as part of the public auction Juwelen - Schmuckstücke aus fürstlichem Besitz, Auktionshaus Dr. Walther Achenbach in Berlin, 24 July 1940, lot 4.

    Pre-Lot Text