Silver Cigarette Case with the Monogram of King Alexander I Karađorđević and
Queen Maria Karađorđević
Dimensions: 7.5 cm x 8.5 cm
Weight: 330.2 g
Material: silver and enamel
Period: 1920’s – 1930’s
Origin: made in Vienna for Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes /Kingdom of Yugoslavia
Manufacturer: Wiener Silber Manufactur
The square shaped cigarette case of a plain surface has an enamel monogram of Yugoslavian King Alexander I Karađorđević and Queen Maria Karađorđević in the upper left corner of the lid. The monogram is formed by interlaced blue and turquoise letters A and M surmounted by a crown. The inner side of the rim is stamped with hallmarks for Vienna silver used after 1922 when Austria was proclaimed a republic, as well as with the hallmark in the form of a four leaf clover - a seal of the quality of the company Wiener Silber Manufactur, and a serial number.
The company was established in 1882 by Alexander Sturm in Vienna. Already in the 19th century and during the entire 20th century, members of the imperial and long established, aristocratic families were among the clients of the company. King Alexander I Karađorđević was one of such clients, and other precious silver artifacts with the royal monogram stamped with the four leaf clover hallmark are known to be ordered from the company usually as gifts of special importance. Today the company is known for producing objects of exceptionally high proportion of silver (940).
This cigarette case is of particular interest because of the particular provenance. It was presented as a token of gratitude for a heroic act of saving two Serbian citizens from drowning in a river in Croatia, by a habitant of a local, nearby town. This act had a special meaning in the political context, since the Kingdom of Serbs, Croatians and Slovenians was formed after the First World War, and in 1929 it was renamed Kingdom of Yugoslavia. The demonstration of good relations between people of different nationalities within newly formed state and the promotion of mutual Slavic origin and spirit of unity were among the most important strivings of Kingdom of Yugoslavia. That is a reason why the Croatian received such a valuable gift with the royal monogram for saving lives of two Serbians.
Alexander I Karađorđević was one of the most prominent members of Serbian Karađorđević dynasty. He ruled as the Regent of Kingdom of Serbia from 1916 – 1918, than as the Regent of Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes from 1918 – 1921, when he became the King of Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenians subsequently renamed in Kingdom of Yugoslavia, and ruled until 1934. In recognition of his greatest accomplishments the National Parliament and the Senate of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia proclaimed him King Alexander I the Unifier. His consort, Rumanian princess Maria, great – grand daughter of Queen Victoria, whom he married in 1922, was one of the most respected and loved queens by the Serbian people.
For further reading about King Alexander I Karađorđević please see The Royal Family of Serbia.
All the presented dates are given to the best of our knowledge. For all further information please contact us.