Please note that the brooch has a scratched inventory number 1?14.
Alexander Spiridovich was Chief of Personal Security to Emperor Nicholas II from 1905 until 1916. Later he authored a number of important books on the life of the Imperial Family and pre-Revolutionary Russia.
Over a period of ten and a half years, Spiridovich accompanied the Emperor on all of his journeys, in Russia as well as abroad, including his trips to the headquarters in Moghilev during the First World War. The Emperor held Spiridovich in high esteem and, at his own expressed wish, Spiridovich was appointed Prefect and Commandant of the Yalta garrison (Crimea) in 1916, where he took charge of the Imperial properties of Livadia, Oreanda, Massandra and others.
In March 1917, with the eruption of revolution, Alexander Kerensky personally ordered the arrest of General Spiridovich in St Petersburg. Six months later he was freed, due to a misunderstanding. In January 1918, arrested again - this time by the Bolsheviks, General Spiridovich also discovered that he was named on 'List No. 19', a list of those who were to be arrested and shot. Spiridovich managed to escape and, after a series of adventures, settled in Paris with his second wife in 1920. Once there, he wrote his memoires in the form of a number of important historical books including Les Dernières Années de la Cour de Tsarskoe Selo, Paris, 1928; Histoire du Terrorisme Russe, 1886-1917, Paris, 1930 and Raspoutine 1863-1916, Paris, 1935. He died in New York in 1952.