1893. Quarto size, measures 11.75" x 9.75." The covers are executed in a silk (or fine linen) brocade over padded thick rigid boards. The centre panel is elaborately embroidered in gold, silver, and coloured thread, inset with approximately 46 "gemstones" (presumably cut glass - though we haven't checked), what we again presume to be "faux" pearls, secured by gold thread. The cover opens as would a folder. The inside is lined with a pink silk lining, with a flap on the inner back cover, into which the back cover of the prayer book it was to house would be inserted.
Contained inside is a handwritten note that reads: "Copy of a prayer book cover which belonged to Charles I before he was King having his initials & badge. The Tudor Rose & the Scotch Thistle & the Order of the Garter. The original is in the possession of Her Majesty the Queen. This book is a replica of the one which was the Chicago World's Fair. 1893." Charles I (1600 - 1649) was the paternal grandson of Mary Queen of Scots, and reigned as King of England, King of Scotland, and King of Ireland, from March 1625 until his execution in 1649. During his turbulent reign England was riven by two civil wars, and at his death the monarchy was abolished and the Cromwellian Interregnum established. After the restoration of the monarchy in 1660 Charles' son, Charles II, took the throne. Charles I was canonised as Saint Charles Stuart and also declated a Martyr by the Church of England.
The bottom edge of the binding is fraying and shows wear. A beautiful, fascinating, and probably unique piece. Item #38829