Chains of Office
Also known as a Livery Collar, these elaborate necklaces were worn in the Middle Ages and after as an insignia of office or a mark of fealty. One of the first recorded collars was granted by Charles V of France to his Chamberlain in 1378.
Collars of various devices were worn by the knights of some of the European orders of knighthood. The custom was begun by Phillip III, Duke of Burgundy, who gave his knights of the Golden Fleece, badges of a golden fleece hung from a gold collar. Following this new fashion, Louix XI of France, when instituting his order of St. Michael in 1469, gave the knights collars of scallop shells linked on a chain.
Perhaps the most famous Chain of Office was the Collar of Esses, which dates to the mid 1300's (the earliest representation of this chain is a funeral effigy of Sir John Swynford, shown wearing it, from 1371). Henry IV, Henry V, and Henry VI wore it as a symbol of the House of Lancaster, although it fell out of favor for a time after the War of the Roses. Henry VIII resumed its use, presenting it to various ministers and courtiers, most notably to Sir Thomas Moore, when he served as Lord Chancellor. It came to be an official symbol of office by the time of Elizabeth I,and is still in use today.
Knotwork Chain of Office
Composed of 12 cast bronze medallions, linked by rings, this collar is just over 32 inches (810 mm) long. Each individual medallion is 2.25 inches (63 mm) wide by 1.25 inches (38 mm) tall. It comes set with onyx cabochon stones, but other stones can be set by special request.
You can order this chain plain, or with a Laurel or Pelican medallion. Other medallions can be hung on this chain by special request.