Bracelet presented to Florence Nightingale by the Sultan of Turkey in 1856
This magnificent bracelet is centrally set with an oval cornelian stone engraved with Arabic text, surrounded by numerous small rose-cut and 28 cushion-shaped diamonds, supported on each side by three rows of nine cushion-shaped diamonds; with a rectangular clasp set with three rows of cushion-shaped stones. The total weight of diamonds is approximately 8.6 carats.
The bracelet was presented to Florence Nightingale by the Sultan before her return to Britain on 28 July 1856. The gift was accompanied by a financial donation for the nurses and hospitals. In a letter from Queen Victoria to the Secretary of State for War, Fox Maule, 2nd Baron Panmure (and later 11th Earl of Dalhousie), dated 27 July 1856, the Queen refers to Nightingale's application for permission to accept these presents:
'The Queen returns this letter of Miss Nightingale's. She had already heard of the gifts of the Sultan's, through Lord Stratford, who communicated with Lord Clarendon on the subject, and asked the Queen's permission for Miss Nightingale to accept the bracelet, as well as the sum of money for the Nurses and Hospitals. The Queen entirely approves of the intended distribution of the money'.
On her death in 1910, this bracelet was one of a number of items, along with the 'Nightingale Jewel' and the marble bust of Florence Nightingale, that were donated to the Royal United Service Institution by the executors of her estate, in accordance with her desire that they should be 'where the soldiers could see them'.
NAM Accession Number
National Army Museum Copyright
National Army Museum, Study collection
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