THE RESURRECTION EGG: A FABERGÉ GOLD, ENAMEL, ROCKCRYSTAL AND JEWELED EASTER EGG,WORKMASTER MICHAEL PERCHIN, ST. PETERSBURG, PRE-1899
The figure of Christ depicted standing above the tomb which is flanked by two kneeling angels, each figure naturalistically enameled, the robes enameled white, raised on an oval base bordered by diamonds, the underside with radiating flutes alternately enameled white and translucent strawberry red, the whole contained within a rock-crystal egg-form shell with a vertical diamond-set band raised on a domed quatrefoil foot enameled with multicolored scrolls in Renaissance style and with diamond-set ribbons and mounted with four pearls, the pearl stem with a border of diamonds, marked with Cyrillic initials of workmaster, Fabergé in Cyrillic and assay mark of 56 standard for 14 karat gold.
The Resurrection Egg bears the early hallmark of head workmaster Michael Perchin 1 and the assay marks of St. Petersburg before 1899, a combination of marks dating it to between 1884 and about 1894. The egg is not inscribed with a Fabergé inventory number.
From September 14 to September 20, 1917 Major General Yerekhovich, chief director in charge of the Anichkov Palace, drew up a list of the Dowager Empress’s treasures to be dispatched to Moscow for safekeeping. Among the descriptions, many of which are easily identifiable, he lists “a small crystal egg with figures inside, on a gold stand with eight diamonds, rose-cut diamonds, and pearls,” 2 a description which fits the Resurrection Egg.
On September 15-16, 1917 a train of forty cars full of Imperial treasure, including eighty-four cases from the Dowager Empress’s Anichkov Palace, departed from Petrograd for Moscow. All the treasures from the capital were stored in the basement of the Kremlin Armory. The present object reappears in a 1922 inventory of confiscated treasure established at the time of a transfer from the Kremlin Armory to Sovnarkom as: “a crystal egg containing figures on goldstand with 8 diamonds, rose-cut diamonds and pearls.” 3
The Resurrection Egg has, until recently, been unanimously considered as one of the eggs given by Tsar Alexander III to his wife, Maria Feodorovna. It was exhibited as such at the pioneering Victoria and Albert exhibition in 1977 organized by the late Kenneth Snowman. It was also published as an Imperial egg by all recognized specialists including Snowman (1953, 1962, 1964, 1972, 1979), Habsburg (1979, 1987, 1993, 1996), Solodkoff (1979, 1984, 1988, 1995) and Hill (1989)....MORE