HISTORY OF FABERGE
|In 1885, The Tsar Alexander III commissioned Faberge to
design a simple matt white enamel egg for his wife Maria Fedorovna. The
Imperial Hen Egg is enameled in opaque white, and polished to give the
effect of an eggshell. The shell conceals a removable surprise of matt
yellow, gold yolk. Inside the yolk sits a plump golden hen. The hen originally
contained an exquisite diamond replica of the Imperial Crown with a tiny
ruby pendant suspended from it. Both these surprises were separated from
the egg, and their present whereabouts are unknown.
The Tsarina was so delighted with this elegant Easter gift, that a
family tradition was born. Faberge was now called upon to design an
egg every year, and every each of them contained its own special surprise.
At first, the Tsar dictated the design of the egg. He would monitor
its progress from start to finish. But eventually, in an extraordinary
gesture, he gave Faberge complete creative freedom – no questions asked.
As the ritual continued, the relationship between the Tsar and Faberge
became more familiar. The eggs were now hand-delivered Faberge to the
palace on Easter morning.
The Renaissance Easter Egg was the last Easter gift
Alexander III was to give to Maria Fedorovna. He died in 1894. His son,
Nicholas II was about to become the new Tsar of Russia.
Nicholas II was completely unprepared to rule Russia. In the first place, because he had no real training. He had been excluded from all government matters while his father was alive. And the second reason was the lack of temperament. He sort of did not have the fire that he would had to have to rule an empire like that.
Regardless, Nicholas II was forced to fill his father’s shoes. Russia was headed for political, economic and social turmoil, but at the moment, Faberge was well on his way to fame and fortune.
Russia 1895, The Empire Nicholas II was about to inherit, was trying to modernize herself. But she was light years away from industrial and commercial standards of Western Europe. The Trans-Siberian rail-road was near the completion, yet most of 150 million people who populated the country’s vast landscapes were poverty stricken and illiterate. Famine and decease were wide spread. Only a privileged people had wealth and could afford the finer things Russia had to offer.
Against this backtrack, Nicholas II married his long time sweetheart
Alexandra in the super ceremony at the Winter Palace.