Prince of Wales' love token to his mistress up for auction in Stansted

PUBLISHED: 09:28 28 April 2010 | UPDATED: 07:37 30 May 2010

IT S a story that sounds familiar: the Prince of Wales has a long love affair with a married woman, in full view of his wife, as the world looks on.

IT'S a story that sounds familiar: the Prince of Wales has a long love affair with a married woman, in full view of his wife, as the world looks on.

The year is 1892 and Bertie, the future Edward VII, is enjoying a passionate nine-year relationship with Daisy, Countess of Warwick (1861-1938).

Perhaps one day he gives her a love token: a leather-bound notebook in a hammered silver cover, made by William Thomas and William Frederick Wright of London in 1892.

The letter 'D' is applied to the front, made up of diamonds and pearls, with enamel daisies below, and the Greek motto 'Gnothi Seauton' - 'Know Thyself' - above. The clasp is in the form of a love heart.

The story didn't end in a fairy tale: the couple split in 1898 and Edward went on to enjoy a succession of extra-marital affairs, including his most famous liaison with Alice Keppel, great-grandmother of Camilla Parker Bowles.

The notebook is to be offered for sale at Sworders Fine Art Auctioneers today (Tuesday April 27) , along with other selected items that came to the present owners from the Countess of Warwick's estate at Easton Lodge, near Great Dunmow. It is estimated to fetch £600-800.

Also from the collection is a fabulous gentleman-artist's box made of kingwood and tulipwood with brass inlay.

Inside is the Rolls Royce of paint boxes, made of gilded silver, which opens up to reveal two palettes for watercolours.

Dating from 1838 and stamped for Charles Rawlings and William Summers of London, it bears the coat-of arms for Baron Greville of Colnyn, County Westmeath 1821-1883). It is expected to sell for £3000-£4000.

General information

Sworders Fine Art Auctioneers is the largest auction rooms in the east of England. It holds six Fine Art auctions per year, which may include pictures, furniture, ceramics, glass, metalware, silver, jewellery, books and garden and architectural items.

Sworders also offers insurance valuations to the highest standard.

Contact details

G E Sworder & Sons Fine Art Auctioneers

Cambridge Road

Stansted Mountfitchet

Essex CM24 8GE

Tel: 01279 817778

Fax: 01279 817779

Email: auctions@sworder.co.uk

Website: sworder.co.uk

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