The final season of The Crown to that mysterious one engagement ring he even dedicates an episode to it. The third chapter is precisely called Dis-moi oui like the jewel that Dodi Al Fayed he would have purchased a few hours before his death to ask for the hand of the Princess Diana.
This is a catalog model, inspired by the 1930s cocktail ringscharacterized by a diamond emerald cut surrounded by four triangle-shaped diamonds forming a star, set on a thick white gold band studded with smaller diamonds. As for the price, we are talking about just over 11 thousand pounds.
Before going into details, it is good to clarify. Everything you see in the successful TV series by the brand Netflix it is not to be taken at face value. Much comes from the imagination of Peter Morgan. The screenwriter and creator of the show puts his own spin on it by mixing reality, fiction and accounts of the time. The Repossi ring is part of this intricate puzzle in which the pieces do not always seem to fit together perfectly. Let’s go step by step.
Everyone had their say after Diana’s disappearance, giving interviews, writing biographies, even speculating summarily. However, much information about the ring has been acquired from formal inquiries into the couple’s deathslasting from 2004 to 2008 and a turning point in 2007, to decide whether the accident had been caused by a conspiracy hatched by Prince Philip because, according to what he believed Mohamed Al Fayedhe did not want the mother of the future king to marry a man of Muslim religion.
Who has spoken several times about it is Alberto Repossi, one of the protagonists, despite himself, of the story. Interviewed by Corriere della Sera in August 2020, he lets himself go through his memory of everything that happened in the summer of 1997. Repossi says that Diana saw the ring Dis-moi oui in their jewelery shop in Monte-Carlo (let’s remember that also Albert of Monaco turned to the jeweler for the token of love stuck on his ring finger Charlene).
Repossi would then be summoned to Saint-Tropez for the details of the ring and to take measurements while having the opportunity to converse with Diana and Dodi. The princess also expressed her intention to entrust some elderly people to the maison jewels to be modernized. In fact, Repossi and Diana should have met again in September with a treasure chest to be refurbished.
At the appointment the jeweler arrived with more important rings, given the importance of the woman who would wear them, but the princess remained convinced of her choice. For the requested changes, the laboratory was reopened in August given that the ring absolutely had to arrive at the jewelry store on Place-Vendôme in Paris on the 30th: on September 1st the two announced their engagement, Repossi claims.
Alberto Repossi maintained the strictest secrecy about the facts until the story of the ring became public knowledge. The jeweler tells the Courier came out when the only survivor of the tragic accident in the Alma Bridge tunnel, the bodyguard Trevor Rees-Jones he did not publish a book with his version of events.
The bodyguard would have written that Dodi had never gone to collect the ring. For the denial, the confidentiality agreement had to be broken: at that point the recordings of the cameras that actually captured Dodi in the jewelry store were disclosed.
Repossi and his wife were separately interrogated by Scotland Yard. The jeweler does not have a good memory of that experience. He told it to The print in 2007, declaring that they were treated as “criminals”. When questioned harshly on the topic of the actual marriage proposal, Repossi claimed he was invited to change the story.
“You run a serious jewelry store, it would be better for your reputation if you changed your version of events” they asked him, according to what he confided to the newspaper. When she pointed this out to the investigators, she received a denial. Perhaps there was a problem with the translation, they said, dismissing the episode.
In the interview with Courier of 2020, when asked why there was so much attention on that ring, Repossi had his say. «The establishment’s work began to prepare Charles’ future union, and as my personal idea, I believe for a media issue, it was preferable to pass off Diana’s last summer as the light summer of a princess, not as the season that precedes an engagement, a new true love” he replied.
He says he knows nothing about the fate of the ring, but that Diana’s personal effects were handed over to her sisters. And here another story begins. In reality, the investigations revealed that the ring was recovered in Dodi’s apartment together with recent receipts indicating waist bag, which means engagement ring in French. The jewel was designed for that purpose so that document does not necessarily tell the truth.
In fact, no one can establish with certainty whether there was a marriage proposal that night although it is thought that in reality Diana didn’t even have time to see that ring. Since the bill from Repossi had not been paid, Mohamed Al Fayed took care to pay for the jewel. The Egyptian billionaire has always insisted that the relationship between his son and Diana had been a great love and that the two were mutually committed, despite what the most trusted people in the princess’s entourage claimed.
He couldn’t help but intervene on this Paul Burrell, Diana’s controversial butler. When questioned at the same commission of inquiry, he declared that the princess would have confided to him that he wanted a new marriage as much as a “bad rash on his face”, words also reported by Diana’s friend Lady Annabel Goldsmith.
He himself speaks of another ring, a Bulgarians of gold worth around 3 thousand pounds that Diana wore on her right hand in the last paparazzi scene outside the Ritz. It is recorded, among other things, among the personal effects recovered after the accident. Unlike the mysterious ring, this was actually given to Diana during the holiday: Burrell himself also tells it in the book The Way We Werereleased in installments on Mail on Sunday in 2007. It was he who suggested to the princess not to wear it on her left hand, a gesture that would have had a meaning, but on her left hand as a “ring of friendship”.
The Dis-moi ouireturned to the limelight with The Crown, has been off the radar for several years. The ring as a testimony to what might have been, was inserted by Mohamed Al Fayed at the Dodi and Diana memorial at Harrods in Londonan installation dismantled in 2018 and returned to the Egyptian tycoon.
From what is known, and what can easily be assumed, it was kept by the tycoon until the end of his days. Al Fayed passed away in London on 30 August 2023, coincidentally on the very day in which his son Dodi began a legend by collecting the ring. A myth now crystallized by the series of records. Which Mohamed Al Fayed didn’t even have time to see.
Source: Vanity Fair
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