A Victorian Coral, Diamond and Enamel Parure
Created in England for Bright & Sons in the 1860s-1870s, this gold, angel skin coral, and diamond suite comprises a pendant necklace, bracelet, pendant earrings, and brooch, preserved in their original fitted box. Inspired by discoveries of jewelry dating from the classical antique, this archaeological revival suite comprises a swag necklace of snake link chain suspending three graduating oval pendants within turquoise blue enamel and delicate bead and wirework surrounds, each centering star-set angel-skin coral cabochon and diamond motif. The hinged bangle bracelet is highlighted by three conforming coral, diamond and enamel bosses, while the brooch with elaborate wirework frame and locket compartment on reverse, and the flexible, articulated ear pendants, are also en suite. Remarkably bold and inventive, combining new and ancient technologies in gold, these rich and colorful jewels bridge ancient, antique, and contemporary with sleek beauty and unusual charm.
- Product Details
- Curator's Notes
Item #: STE-20363
Size: Necklace: 15.00” length; Bracelet: 6.00” interior circumference x 1.00” width; Pendant earrings: 1.00” length x 0.75” width; Brooch: 1.50” diameter
Materials: 43 old mine and rose-cut diamonds; 32 angel skin coral cabochons; Enamel; Gold; Original fitted velvet and morocco leather box
Signed: Fitted box is signed Bright & Sons, Scarborough (established 1857)
By the 1860s and 70s, Queen Victoria, who had launched so many styles in fashion and jewelry since ascending the throne, gradually became a symbol of benevolent stability. British society was fascinated at once with technology and the forms of the machine, as well as astonishing treasures uncovered by celebrity practitioners of the infant science of archaeology. Sleek, plain-polished chain links, glowing high karat gold surfaces, and hinges that unabashedly resembled tubular machine parts, were united with applied bead and wirework of superb delicacy inspired by the ancients. Women of the period wore these new jewels with shimmering, boldly-colored brocades and satins volumized by crinolines. Jewels and clothing were further dramatized by the bright flashes and deep shadows cast by candlelight.