Imperial Frame, Carl Fabergé, 1897
Silver and enamel
in the Louis XVI taste, decorated with translucent yellow enamel over a dappled engraved ground, the curved pediment, surmounted by a laurel crowned trophy of crossed quivers and two flaming torches, emblematic of the Triumph of Love.
Workmaster: Johann Viktor Aarne.
St. Petersburg, pre 1896.
Inventory number: 57992.
10.5 by 5.5 cm.
Purchased jointly by Grand Dukes George (above left) and Michael Alexandrovich (above right); younger brothers of Emperor Nicholas II, in 1897 for 140 roubles.
Two years after buying the frame Grand Duke George died tragically, aged 28, following a motorcycle crash. Grand Duke Michael, the darling of the Imperial Family, survived until the revolution. He was murdered by the Bolsheviks in Perm June 1918.
The frame was almost certainly bought by the brothers as a gift, possibly for a member of their family.