May 6th, 2023, marked a historical moment of this century with the much-awaited coronation ceremony of King Charles III and the Queen Consort Camilla of the United Kingdom. The ceremony had many notable aspects but the most significant one was the discontinuation of the centuries-old tradition of wearing the Kohinoor by the Queen Consort on her coronation day.
In this article, we are discussing the historic royal move and the possible reasons to break away from the tradition of wearing the Kohinoor.
A Background Information About The Kohinoor
The Koh-i-Noor or Kohinoor is one of the largest cut diamonds in the world to this day. Kohinoor is a Persian word that means ‘Mountain of Light. The diamond weighs about 105.6 carats in its current form.
Originally, the diamond is said to be far bigger than what is seen today. It is believed to be mined in present-day Andhra Pradesh in the late 13th or 14th century. It became a treasured possession of the Mughal emperors during their reign. Over the years, the diamond was cut into smaller and smaller pieces and was even adorned in the infamous peacock throne of Mughal ruler Aurangzeb.
In 1739, the Kohinoor was invaded and stolen by Persian ruler Nader Shah. And in 1813, Maharaja Ranjit Singh once again acquired the diamond and brought it back to Punjab. However, after the takeover of Punjab by the East India Company in 1849, the diamond was presented to Queen Victoria as a token of peace.
Since the British acquisition of the diamond, the queens of England began to wear the Kohinoor in their crowns. Currently, it is a part of the British Crown Jewels and is embedded in the crown of Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother.
Why Did Camilla Opt Not To Wear The Kohinoor On Her Coronation?
The Queen Consort Camilla was not crowned with the same crown that consists of the Kohinoor diamond. This major decision was a result of a backlash received from the Ministry of External Affairs in India after the death of Queen Elizabeth II.
The issue raised by the Indian authorities was the origin of the Kohinoor. As it is a historically known fact that the Kohinoor is a product of Indian soil that was acquired by the British royals during their colonial regime over India.
In lieu of this ongoing issue with India regarding the stone, Buckingham Palace released an official announcement which came to be observed that Camilla will not wear the traditional crown with the Kohinoor. It was the first time in about two centuries that the Queen Consort did not wear the Kohinoor.
It was solely a decision made to avoid raising any controversy with nations like India and Pakistan over the controversial origin of the Kohinoor diamond. The British officials made a wise decision to somehow avoid a scandal on such an auspicious day for the royalties.