|The House of Faberge received seven commissions (1898-1904) to produce Easter eggs for the fabulously wealthy Barbara Kelkh, the wife of the industrialist Alexander Kelkh. The Twelve Panel Egg (1899) was created by Michael Perkhin, one of Peter Carl Faberge's head work masters, and was the second of the famous Kelkh Easter eggs. As if anticipating the trouble Russia was about to experience, Barbara Kelkh moved to Paris in 1905 with all her belongings. The egg, said to be Barbara Kelkh's favorite, remained with her in Paris until its sale in the early 1930's. King George V of England presented this egg to his wife Queen Mary for Christmas 1933. The egg is now in the collection of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. Yellow 24K gold plate, rose-cut crystals, portrait crystals, translucent pink and green enamel, and opaque white enamel create this egg's elegant and delicate appearance. A pair of swans, one gold and one studded with crystals, gliding on a lake of blue enamel guilloche make up the surprise.
In Russia, the swans are a symbol of family life and the permanence of the bond of marriage. Height: 5 1/2" with stand, 4 1/8" without.|