The Cameo Tiara or Empress Josephine’s Cameo Tiara
The famous Swedish tiara wasn’t originally owned by the Swedish royal family, it actually came from France from the first wife of Napoleon, Empress Joséphine. Joséphine mostly likely received the tiara from her husband, Napoleon sometime around 1809, at a time when cameos were much more popular. The tiara was reportedly made by the French jeweler Nitot.
Cameos-a piece of jewelry, typically oval in shape, consisting of a portrait in profile carved in relief on a background of a different color.
The seven cameos used in this tiara were made first and were not intended to go together, which is why they are all different in size and color. Each is framed in pearls and they sit on a base of gold and seed pearls. The Cameo tiara is a part of a set including, a pair of earrings, a brooch, a necklace, and a bracelet. In the center of the tiara is either pictured to be Cupid and Psyche or Venus and Psyche.
The tiara came to be in Joséphine’s daughters hands, Queen Hortense of Holland, but it then it traveled to Joséphine’s granddaughters hand, Queen Josephine of Leuchtenberg.
Josephine #2 brought the tiara to Sweden through her marriage to the future King Oscar I of Sweden and Norway, and it has remained there ever since.