Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge is expected to take on the title of Queen Consort once Prince William succeeds both his grandmother the Queen and Prince Charles to the throne. The Duchess of Cambridge has accumulated a large collection of jewellery since joining the Royal Family in 2011, and has been seen donning several family tiaras on official occasions. But upon her coronation, Kate could have to wear a crown believed to be “cursed” because of a key component included in its structure.
According to French magazine Gala, the Duchess may choose to take on Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother’s crown, which was last seen in public in 2002 during her funeral’s procession.
The crown boasts at its top the infamous Koh-i-Noor diamond, which has long been disputed between the UK and India.
The diamond was first brought to England during the reign of Queen Victoria after the Punjab region was annexed to the empire in 1849.
But the Koh-i-Noor diamond soon sparked concerns of a curse after an outbreak of cholera erupted on the ship bringing the jewel to the UK.
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The diamond was repeatedly cut to achieve its current shape and passed on from Victoria to her successor’s wife, Queen Alexandra, and then on to Queen Mary in 1910.
Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother finally received it in 1936 and had it added to the crown she wore to the Parliament’s State Opening ceremony when escorting her husband George VI in 1937.
Queen Elizabeth II then wore the crown during her coronation in June 1953.
The crown is an impressive piece set with 2,800 diamonds including the Koh-i-Noor which stands at its top.
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Speculation arose in 2005 suggesting the Queen Mother’s crown may pass on to Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall when she becomes Princess Consort next to Prince Charles.
The suggestion sparked the fury of the Indian Government, who in 2002 had protested the appearance of the crown on top of the Queen Mother’s casket during her funeral procession.
A spokesman for the High Commission in London said: “The Indian government has a legitimate claim. We hope to resolve the issue as soon as possible.”
However, the Foreign Office drafted a firm rebuttal of any foreign claims to the Koh-i-Noor in 1976 and the response is expected to stand.
A memo issued to the Pakistani Government said: “The stark facts are these: i) We have the Koh-i-Noor diamond, whether or not our possession of it is legally justified. ii) We have made it clear that we are keeping the diamond, adducing the best arguments to support our contention.”