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Brooch – Antique Pearl Bar Brooch

30033
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An antique Victorian bar¹ brooch styled as a curve featuring 15 grain-set pearl cross-over with stylised flower-heads² on curlicued wires, of a yellow and rose gold-coloured³ metal construction, and employing a pin and hook fitting. Circa 1890-1900.

£95.00
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Description

Brooch – Antique Pearl Bar Brooch

An antique Victorian bar¹ brooch styled as a curve featuring 15 grain-set pearl cross-over with stylised flower-heads² on curlicued wires, of a yellow and rose gold-coloured³ metal construction, and employing a pin and hook fitting. Circa 1890-1900.

 

Assessment of the Pearls (average stated where applicable).

Graduated in size: 1.30mm to 1.50mm.

Colours: grey to greyish white.

 

Details of the Setting.

Measuring: 45.75mm x 12.40mm.

Unhallmarked: tested and valued as 9ct gold.

Stamped: ‘9ct’.

Weight: 2.29g.

Condition: fair (soft solder on pin fitting).

 

£95.00.

                                                                                                                                                     

Comment(s).

¹. Bar brooches appeared in the 1890s and immediately enjoyed a great success. In its simplest form the bar brooch was plainly set with a single diamond, but its functional shape offered the jeweller a field in which to exploit their fantasy and imagination, thus bar brooches were decorated with crescents and stars, sprays of leaves and flowers, pheasants and chat idles, swallows and flies, shamrocks and clovers (David Bennet and Daniela Mascetti 'Understanding Jewellery', 1989).

 

². Perhaps the most intriguing aspect of these brooches is the elaborate symbolism used and the meaningful motives which were heaped upon each piece. Endless variations were produced from a small selection of the most popular motifs, but occasionally you may find a more unusual motif and simple. The study of flower law was taken very seriously in the second half of the 19th century. The translation of the language of flowers, in particular, had become a fashionable pastime in the 1850s, and several small volumes had been published as guides to the various meanings of flowers. They also delved into the exotic associations of flowers with ancient and eastern tales. Items of sentiment always showed their meaning with flower motif. By the time they appeared on almost every one of the stamped-out brooches of the 1890s the various species of plants could barely be recognised and the flowers and leaves became very stylised.

The ivy leaf meaning friendship, fidelity and marriage; little round five or six leaved petals stylised flower which appear most often in love brooches, always almost represents forget-me-nots for true love; the fern symbolising fascination, magic and sincerity; and the bluebell for constancy, the lily of the valley, marriage, were amongst the most popular. The rose had a different meaning for each variety; a cabbage rose meant ambassador of love, and a thorn-less rose early attachment. The flowers were usually overlaid with pink gold and the leaves with yellow gold (Vivian Becker, ‘Antique and Twentieth Century Jewellery: A Guide for Collectors’, 1980).

 

³. Gold is too soft to be used in jewellery in its purist state and it is always alloyed with some other metal to make it more durable. As one might expect, this kind of metal mixed with the gold influences the colour of the resulting alloy; a proportion of copper results in a reddish shade and silver gives metal with a strange greenish cast. Even blue gold can be obtained by adding a small percentage of iron (Peter Hinks, 'Nineteenth Century Jewellery', 1975).

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30033
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Brooch – Antique Pearl Bar Brooch

Brooch – Antique Pearl Bar Brooch

An antique Victorian bar¹ brooch styled as a curve featuring 15 grain-set pearl cross-over with stylised flower-heads² on curlicued wires, of a yellow and rose gold-coloured³ metal construction, and employing a pin and hook fitting. Circa 1890-1900.

Write your review
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