The Empress’ Crown

Written by Super User. Posted in Tehran historical sites

The Empress’ Crown


Mohammed Reza Shah Pahlavi, who ascended the throne in 1941, vowed not to have his coronation until he could bring his growth and development to his country and emancipate his people socially, economically and pedagogically. To achieve these goals, he launched the "White Revolution" and when his ambitious programs began to show results and his popularity in the country he finally decided to hold his coronation on October 26, 1967, 25 years after The throne. The coronation ceremony also had a threefold meaning, as it was not only the coronation of the Shah, but also for the first time in the history of Iran, the coronation of the Queen of the Shah, as Empress and the explanation of the Shahs son Prince Reza Cyrus as crown prince of the Iran, with the Empress or Shahbanou as regent, in the event of the death of the Shah before the Crown Prince attains maturity.

As it was the first time in 2500 years, the Shah's wife was crowned, a special crown was to be made for this occasion, and the crown of the crown fell upon the famous Parisian jewelery factory of Van Cleef & Arpels.
The precious stones used for this unique crown were selected from the loose gemstones found in the royal Iranian treasure chamber. The whole crown is made of green velvet and white gold. The crown was a little narrower at the base and wider at the top. There are a total of 38 emeralds, 105 pearls, 34 rubies, 2 spinels and 1469 diamonds on the crown. The total weight of the crown is 1.481 kg. The crown has a motif of the sunburst in the front, with the largest emerald with a weight of 91.32 carats in the center, surrounded by a set of smaller white diamonds.


The rays of the sun are represented by six large natural pearls from the center. The beads alternate with rubies, seven in all, and each ruby ​​is surrounded by a series of smaller white diamonds. Under the great central emerald of the sunburst is another great emerald, which is also surrounded by smaller white diamonds. There are four rows of small white diamonds that run around the perimeter of the crown. Two of these rows are horizontal rows parallel to each other and closer to the base of the crown. The other two are closely parallel spiral rows over the horizontal rows and run around the crown. The spiral series originate from both sides of the second largest emerald under the sunburst. More pearls and rubies are placed symmetrically on the crown. The two large spinels seem to be placed as the centerpiece of another motif on either side of the crown. The two large spinels are about 83 carats.
Overall, the Empress's crown seems to be beautiful, but relatively simple compared to the more elaborate counterparts, the Kiani and Pahlavi crowns.

On October 26, 1967, after the religious ceremonies, the Shah stood up from the Naderi throne and received the coronation regalia, as the emerald belt, the royal sword, and the jewel, the imperial garment. Then the officer, who bore the Crown of the Crown (Pahlavi), approached the Shah who received the crown from him, and while he was standing before the Naderi throne before the invited guests, he put him on the head and Crowned himself as follows Napoleon Bonaparte did 1804, at the time of its coronation. Finally, the royal scepter was handed over to him, and the rituals of the Shah's corruption ceremony were over.

 Immediately afterwards, Shah's queen, Farah Diba, who was sitting on a ceremonial chair, stood up and went slowly to her husband. An officer carrying the Crown of the Empress now moved to the Shah who received the crown from him, and placed it on the head of his wife, crowning her as Empress of Iran, the first time in the 2,500-year-old Iranian building, Had a Shah's wife been crowned Empress.


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