The Romanovs, the last dynasty of Russia, ruled from 1613-1917. Their reign was one of extravagance and luxury, and you can certainly tell from their trinkets. "Jewels of the Romanovs: Family & Court" by Stefano Papi (Thames & Hudson, $75) delves into the stories of their jewels. You'll have to check out the book to get into the fascinating lives of the wearers, but you can get a peek and admire the gorgeous pieces in my gallery below. Enjoy!
1 On his coronation in 1896, Nicholas II gave Grand Duke Vladamire -- his uncle -- and the Grand Duchess this box by Faberge, workmaster Michael Perkhin.
2 The oval aquamarines from this piece could be detached to serve as brooches, and the pendant, too, could be worn separately.
3 A Neoclassical cigarette case by Faberge, richly decorated with flowers and swags in four colors of gold. It was a gift from the Empress Alexandra to Grand Duchess Maria Pavlovna and Grand Duke Vladimir on their silver wedding in 1899.
4 A rare cigarette case of mother-of-pearl and gold, made by Michael Perkhin in 1890. The initials "W.A." for Grand Duke Vladimir Alexandrovich, surmounted with an imperial crown, have been added to the cover.
5 Earrings set with pear-shaped diamonds, weighing 14.25 and 20.35 carats respectively, said to have belonged to Queen Marie Antoinette.
6 An exceptional group of jewelry created by Rene Lalique between 1898 and 1904. These are splendid examples of the new Art Nouveau style, of which Lalique was the undisputed master.
Photos courtesy of Sotheby's.