A Fabergé silver and enamel badge of the Society to Assist Soldiers Who Had Suffered in the War and Their Families (Obshchestva povsemestnoi pomoshchi postradavshim na voine soldatam i ikh sem’iam), circa 1913-1917. Formed as the coat-of-arms of the Imperial Russian army with double-headed eagle surmounted by a single crown and St. George facing to the right on a shield with a pointed top. The Imperial orb and scepter of Russian emperors is held in the talons at left and the white Christian cross, symbol of Christian charity, is held in the talon at right, the design set against a laurel wreath with a blue banner with the Russian slogan “For Faith, Tsar, and Fatherland.” On the back of the eagle’s wings is inscribed the number of the badge (1419) and A.T. Yurchenko, the name of the recipient. Struck with Fabergé in Cyrillic, 88 standard, and workmaster’s initials, possibly those of Albert Holmström. Width 2 1/8 in. (5.5 cm).
Provenance: Sotheby’s New York, 10 June 1981, lot 176.
The Society had been formed during the Russo-Japanese War in 1904. This large and important philanthropic society, devoted to the care and education of wounded and deceased soldiers, their wives, and their children, had 880 chapters across Russia by 1914. The firm of Fabergé was granted exclusive rights to produce this design, approved by the government on May 5, 1913. See S. B. Patrikeev and A. B. Boinovich, Nagrudnye znaki Rossii, volume 1 (Moskva: Farn, 1995), 3.28. For Nicholas II’s personal badge from this society, now in the collection of the Hermitage Museum, see Elsebeth Welander-Berggren. Carl Fabergé: Goldsmith to the Tsar (Stockholm: Nationalmuseum, 1997), no. 211, p. 202.
For additional information about this piece, please contact us.