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The Crown Jewels Hardcover – Sep 20 2011

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Thames and Hudson (Sept. 20 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0500515751
  • ISBN-13: 978-0500515754
  • Product Dimensions: 2.8 x 0.2 x 3.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 1.9 Kg
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #80,898 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description


Very highly recommended as an outstanding presentation. — The Midwest Book Review

[This book] is a must for those with a fascination of British royalty and history, along with those who have a fascination with fine jewelry as well. — The Midwest Book Review

About the Author

Anna Keay was a curator at the Tower of London and now works at English Heritage. Her books include The Magnificent Monarch, The Elizabethan Tower of London, and The Crown Jewels.

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Most helpful customer reviews

Format: Hardcover
In addition to the wealth of information, the pictures are outstanding. This is a beautifully photographed book. I recently saw the Crown Jewels in London and this book does justice to them.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
OH...! fantastic, beautiful pictures and compelling history. a real joy!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 23 reviews
19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
I have a feeling "I can buy the crown jewels" Oct. 8 2011
By Jose F. Santiago-llorens - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Luxurious, flawless research, well documented, beautifully photographed. A perfect companion if you have Leslie Field's classic "The Queen's Jewels". From the manufacture, symbolism and function in the ceremony, all aspects are covered. Beautiful artwork complement the jewelry photos. Don't pass this one up.
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
Anglophiles: go crazy!! May 2 2012
By Jane in Milwaukee - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I thought it would be helpful for you to see what's inside this book. So I put a bunch of Images above. This is a gorgeous book chock-full of gripping details about the subject matter and ridiculously close-up and detailed photography. [Ooops, rather than go crazy you'll have to tone it down a bit. Amazon deleted most customer-uploaded images from product pages in July 2013.]

First and foremost, it is a coffee table book that you can peruse at your leisure. Any page you turn to will have glorious pictures, most covering the entire leaf with captions and descriptions. The cover photo is of the official Imperial Crown made for King George VI, QEII's father, in 1937. It was sized down to fit her and is in current use. (See her coronation picture in Images.)

Second, it is a history of the Crown. Via examining the ancient inherited riches, it is a natural flow to explain the royalty in England, the world's premier monarchy. I have focused on the crowns in the Images but the other regalia including, orbs, scepters, robes, gifts, the extensive jewel collection and portraits help tell the entire story. The following appears in the book:

"The story of the royal family in the 18th century is a tale of fathers and sons. With chilling consistency, each generation loathed the next: George I was on lamentable terms with his son George II; George II detested his son, Frederick Prince of Wales, while Frederick's son George III, considered his heir, George IV, to be an imbecile."

My husband is from England and, coincidentally, soon after giving me this book for Christmas, my husband's sister mailed him a letter in the envelope shown above. With the recent issuance of the stamp which comprises the cover of this book, and with the Olympics, the royal wedding and Queen Elizabeth's Diamond Jubilee approaching, there is renewed interest in the glory of England. As a student of Tudor times and having a love of all that is British, I applaud this.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
more than pretty photos April 10 2012
By J. Rice - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I've visited the Jewel Tower more than several times and this book told me more than I learned on several lengthy guided tours.

If you enjoy History AND jewelry, this book is for you. The book itself arrived wrapped like a Crown Jewel with purple and scarlet velvet ribbon !

The photography is spectacular. The text is inclusive without being too scholarly.

I can't afford a trip to London this year, but this book is a good substitute.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Paperback verses Hardback Sept. 14 2012
By Mr. C. I. Carr - Published on
From the opening double page with its close up of the front of St Edwards Crown (Hardback Edition) to the final inventory of all the riches in the collection, this is the definitive collection of photographs. The camera takes us closer to the crowns and orbs than we could ever hope for in real life. In fact if you were ever this close you would probably be arrested and locked up in the Tower permanently. Well there are three versions of this book. Firstly the most expensive which features the hardback version with a Victorian pull out frieze. The main two are the stand alone hardback version verses the paperback edition. Be aware they are very different. I ordered the paperback and quickly cancelled it when I realized how much better the hardback version was.
The paperback has only 179 pages as opposed to the 204 pages in the hardback. The paperback has 189 illustrations, 172 in colour, whilst hardback offers 296 illustrations, 277 of which are in colour. Sizing is different too. The hardback is so much larger at 32.5cm x 27.7cm, poor old paperback is only 27.2cm x 22.8cm.
Of course the price reflects the sizing and paperback verses hardback, but well worth getting the better version, after all the Crown Jewels are not about to change. The writing of history and background is most interesting and in future I shall be able to spot the fakes with paste jewels, oh yes there are quite a few, all above board. To sum up, its worth the more expensive price for the amazing new photographs in the highest, clearest detail. Well done Anna Keay and her team, I doubt this book will ever be bettered.
is the best ever produced Feb. 13 2015
By Vintage man - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This magnificent volume on the "crown jewels", is the best ever produced, due to the stunning, dramatic photos, published on heavy, glossy paper. The historical information was not wholly relevant to the subject, as the author writes from a cultural anthropological standpoint, overall her efforts were to be applauded, in this unique book on the glittering, jaw dropping gems of the "royals". I have seen them, and the "Imperial State Crown" and "Royal Scepter" with the Star of Africa I and II, being simply awe inspiring. The Hope Diamond was a visual treat, but when viewing the Cullinan Diamonds, set in their regal housing, it looks like merely impressive. Though blue diamonds are the rarest in the world. Buy the book, own it for life and enjoy the other great photos of the majestic Koh-I-Noor and the Stewart Sapphire.