King Kalākaua’s crown

31 01 2022
Kalākaua’s crown

In yesterday’s class taught by historian Ronald Williams about King David Kalākaua of Hawaiʻi, who reigned from 1874-1891, we learned about the coronation. It was an event to assert national independence around the world. The crown, a symbol of nationhood, originally was decorated with 192 small diamonds, 22K gold kalo (taro) leaves, emeralds, rubies, opals, and other gems. Gold-covered pearls from Scotland lead the eye to the top; eight lines of them represented the eight major islands of Hawai’i. I was impressed by the gold kalo leaves.

Gold-covered pearls

When the Hawaiian monarchy was overthrown in 1893, many of the jewels were stolen out of the crown. They have since been replaced. Current visitors to Iolani Palace can see this crown.

~ Rebekah



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