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October 15th

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Name Resurrection (Transformation) Egg

Date before 1899

Provenance Presented by Alexander III to Czarina Maria Fyodorovna

Made in St. Petersburg

Work-master Michael Perchin

Marks MP, crossed anchors, 56

Media gold, rose-cut diamonds, rock cristal, pearls

Size 9,8 cm tall

Techniques ronde bosse, enamel

Kept in Svyaz' Vremyon Fund - Viktor Vekselberg collection - Moscow
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eggMade before 1889, this egg is one of Faberge's masterpieces, exquisitely made in the manner of the Italian Renaissance. The clear rock crystal egg rests on a fluted quatrefoil base that is colorfully enamelled in translucent green, red, and blue arabesques between bands of opaque white enamel dotted with red enamel. The egg itself is banded with gold and diamonds. The resurrection group featured inside is Christ rising from the tomb, flanked by two kneeling angels. The three gold figures in the group are enamelled en ronde bosse (1) - white drapery and lilac-coloured wings, in opaque colors quite naturistically. The grass and the ground on which the group is arranged are enamelled pale green and brown with yellow flecks, and the base is surrounded by a narrow belt of rose diamonds.

The door is enameled to simulate marble with a coral-colored handle. The whole Resurrection scene is contained within a carved rock crystal egg, the two hemispheres held together by a line of rose diamonds. A large pearl serves as the shaft for this egg.

The base features four pearls and panels of rose diamonds and eight brilliant-cut diamonds and supports a large pearl which is connected to the crystal egg with gold mounts.

inThis egg has no surprise within. It is also the only Faberge egg with a direct reference to the Easter holiday it was created to observe. The Resurrection egg doesn't belong to Imperial Easter eggs' list.

A highly intriguing hypothesis has recently been advanced by Christopher Forbes, namely that the Resurrection Egg is in fact the surprise originally contained in the Renaissance Egg. This would account for its being shown in the same showcase at the 1902 exhibition, where surprises have been separated from their eggs. Moreover, style and coloring of both objects are virtually identical and the size of the Resurrection Egg perfectly fits the curvature of the egg. Besides, style and coloring of both objects are actually identical. The invoice of the Renaissance Egg mentions a pearl, which is not accounted for unless it was part of the surprise. This work of art does not bear an inventory number, which speaks in favor of an Imperial presentation, a hypothesis which would explain why the Resurrection Egg is not included in the generally accepted list of Imperial eggs.

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(1) Ronde bosse = a round decorative raised part or protrusion on a flat surface.

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