New Delhi: Peter Carl Faberge, the famed Russian jeweller who is the subject of Wednesday's Google doodle, in his position as the the court jeweller to the last of the Russian Czars, designed his first Imperial Easter egg in 1885. [Images]
The Romanovs had a tradition of presenting elaborate eggs on Easter. Czar Alexander III wanted something special to gift the Czarina Maria Feodorovna and asked Faberge for a special egg.
Maria Feodorovna was from Denmark and the second daughter of the Danish King Christian IX. Keeping the Czarina's origins in mind, Peter Carl Faberge designed an egg that closely resembled one in the collection of the royal family of Denmark. The Russian Empress was very touched by this exquisite gift.
Peter Carl Faberge's first egg for the Russian royals is also called the hen egg and was made of gold and white enamel. The inside of the egg had a yolk made of gold within which was a golden hen. The eyes of the hen were made of rubies. The golden hen concealed a miniature crown and at the centre hung a tiny ruby egg.
Alexander III was very impressed with Peter Carl Faberge's creation and asked Faberge to create a special egg for the Czarina every Easter. The purpose of Alexander III's gift was also to make Maria Feodorovna overcome the shock of the assassination of his father Czar Alexander II.
While the Hen egg was the first, the last Easter egg that Faberge crafted for the Czarina was a strawberry pink egg which contained a golden rosebud, inside which was a crown made of diamond and ruby.
Faberge designed Easter eggs for the Romanovs for 37 years, a total of 54 eggs. Only 47 of the Fabergé Imperial eggs are believed to have survived. Nine of the famous Imperial Fabergé eggs were displayed in India during an exhibition in late 2008.
The hen egg designed by Peter Carl Faberge in 1885.
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