The Crown Diamonds

Under the direction of Anne Dion-Tenenbaum

This book is a comprehensive and original study for a reference work.
A true convergence between art, history, and science.
A co-edition by Louvre Editions & Editions Faton

Le livre ”Les Diamants de la Couronne”

The book

Since 1889, the Crown Jewels and Diamonds have been displayed in the Apollo Gallery at the Louvre Museum.
But where do these historical pieces that evoke so much admiration come from: the Régent, the Hortensia, the Côte-de-Bretagne, the Sancy?

Visitors to the Apollo Gallery are not always aware of the events that have allowed the Crown Jewels to arrive before their eyes, in the perfect light of the new showcases installed in 2020.

Their history dates back to 1530 when François I bequeathed eight rings to his successors.
Initially called “jewels of the Crown,” they were later renamed “diamonds of the Crown.” Despite the eventful events of their history, marked by thefts, dispersals, and sales, a few jewels still bear witness to royal luxury.




To the jewels that form the initial core of the collection, miraculously spared from the famous 1887 sale and preserved after the Revolution, historical pieces acquired or received as donations since the mid-20th century are now added.

These diamonds are the subject of ongoing research, benefiting from scientific collaboration with numerous institutions, including the National Museum of Natural History.


Extrait du livre "Les Diamants de la Couronne"


The study conducted on molds stored in mysterious boxes without inventory numbers recently led to the identification of jewels that have since disappeared, thus contributing to the enrichment of knowledge about the Crown’s gemstones.

After Germain Bapst, the jeweler who was the first historian of the Crown’s diamonds in 1889, and Bernard Morel, who dedicated a reference book to them in 1988, today’s top specialists present us with a new approach to their understanding in this extensively illustrated work.


Joyaux en vitrine de la Galerie d'Apollon au Musée du Louvre


The autor

Anne Dion-Tenenbaum, Chief Curator in the Department of Decorative Arts at the Louvre Museum, has contributed to several books on the history of France, such as Napoléon à Sainte-Hélène: La conquête de la mémoire (Napoleon at Saint Helena: The Conquest of Memory ) and Marie d’Orléans : Princesse et artiste romantique 1813-1839 (Marie d’Orléans: Princess and Romantic Artist 1813-1839).


Table of contents

The Creation of the Crown Jewels
Michèle Bimbenet-Privat and François Farges

Paris at the Dawn of Brilliance
François Farges

The Inventory of the Crown Jewels in 1666
Michèle Bimbenet-Privat and François Farges

The Inventory of 1691
Michèle Bimbenet-Privat and François Farges

The Eighteenth Century Trimmings
François Farges

From Marie Leszczynska to Marie-Antoinette: Ornaments of Queens and Dauphines
Michèle Bimbenet-Privat and François Farges

The Crown Jewels under Louis XVI and during the Revolution
Anne Dion-Tenenbaum and François Farges

The Administration of the Crown Diamonds from the First to the Second Empire
Anne Dion-Tenenbaum

The Crown Diamonds during the Restoration
Anne Dion-Tenenbaum

The Crown Diamond Castings
François Farges and Anne Dion-Tenenbaum

The Jewels of the Royal Family during the July Monarchy
Anne Dion-Tenenbaum

The Crown Diamonds under the Second Empire
Anne Dion-Tenenbaum

The Crown Diamonds under the Third Republic
Anne Dion-Tenenbaum

Index of Proper Names
Index of Major Diamonds



Le livre ”Les Diamants de la Couronne”

Louvre Editions & Editions Faton

Format: 24 x 32 cm
288 pages
Approximately 250 illustrations

Publication Date: September 2023
ISBN : 978-2-87844-330-1


This book is available at the Librairie du Louvre stand in FAB PARIS, from November 22nd to 26th 2023
Learn more

It is also available online on the Editions Faton website.





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