Tuesday, July 12, 2016

7/12/16 Report - Queen Isabella Farnese and Her Jewels. Wedding Coins.

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of TreasureBeachesReport.blogspot.com.

Philip V and Queen Isabella.
Warren D. wrote today and mentioned that this is the 250th anniversary of the death of Queen Elisabeth (anglicized version of Isabella) and pointed out that we are still looking for the jewels that were being sent to her on the 1715 Fleet that sank on the Treasure Coast.  He asked if there are any "specifics" about the "Queen's jewels" or "Dowry" or if anyone had a complete list.

This seems like a good time to remind you of my 10/10/15 post that discussed a little about las arras matrimoniales, which would normally include 13 gold coins in an ornate box.  In the case of Queen Farnese, I'm pretty sure those would be the finest imaginable and would include royals in a gold box.

Here is the link to that post.


And here is a link to a book entitled Elisabeth Farnese,"the Termagant of Spain," written by Armstrong Edward.


The queen said she wouldn't consummate the marriage until she received the gifts.  She had several children, so apparently consummated the marriage despite the sinking of the 1715 Fleet. What part of it might have been salvaged, I don't know.  She might have accepted replacements, but I'm sure, one way or another, she received some amazing trinkets.

As Spanish explorers spread their customs around the world, the las arras matrimoniales ceremony became an integral part of the marriage vows in many cultures. 

Currently For Sale On The Internet For Las Arras.
The ornate box shown above is plated.  I'm sure the box meant for Queen Fornese was not plated. 

Notice the thirteen coins, which is the custom.  The number 13 carries multiple meanings.  

The origin of this custom can be traced back to a time when a piece of silver or gold was broken in half whenever a pledge was made.  During the wedding, the groom and bride took half of the broken coin.  The custom evolved over the centuries and the coin became a symbol of the groom's commitment to provide for his new family.

Generally, the symbolic gesture communicates the couple's trust in each other to share the responsibility of managing the household finances. The groom makes a pledge to provide for his family while the bride vows to honor the blessings God has put into their lives.

Presented to the groom by an honored padrinos or madrinas (godparent) and blessed by the priest, the coins are a good luck token and a sign of prosperity.  It is also said that each coin represents continued prosperity for each month of the year, with a little extra to spare. Additionally, the odd number is not dividable, just as a strong marriage should be. be without money. 

Since the tradition is deeply rooted in the Catholic faith, the coins also symbolize Jesus and his 12 apostles.

After the arras blessing, the priest passes the coins to the bride, who places them in the groom's cupped hands. The groom then pours them back into the bride's cupped hands and places the box on top.

The back and forth exchange symbolizes the couple's commitment to sharing their life together, for richer or poorer. In some cultures, the coins are presented one at a time to represent love, trust, commitment, respect, joy, happiness, harmony, wisdom, nurturing, caring, cooperation and peace.


Nothing new with the weather or beach conditions.

Happy hunting,