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Imperial Red Cross Easter Egg

Imperial Red Cross Easter Egg

1915

firm of Peter Carl Fabergé

(Russian, 1846-1920)

firm of Henrik Wigström

(Russian, 1862-1923)

fabricated by

Gold, silver, enamel, glass, ivory

Overall: 8.6 x 6.4 cm (3 3/8 x 2 1/2 in.)

The India Early Minshall Collection 1963.673

Fun Fact

This egg was confiscated by the Bolsheviks during the Russian Revolution.

Description

Compared to other Fabergé eggs elaborately ornamented with jewels, this work reflects the mood of austerity in Russia during World War I with its design of two simple red enamel crosses, featuring miniatures of the tsar’s daughters Olga and Tatiana, over a white enamel background. When opened, the egg reveals a depiction of the Resurrection flanked by the patron saints of the two girls.

Fabergé created this work in 1915 for Tsar Nicholas to present to his wife, Alexandra, following the Russian Orthodox custom of giving decorated eggs at Easter. This very personal gift honors the service of the tsarina and her daughters as Red Cross Sisters of Mercy since they had begun that year to care for wounded soldiers within the imperial palaces.

See also

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