Rings 06.10.2014
This gold ring has an oval bezel that opens to form a concealed locket, containing an enamelled portrait of Charles I (reigned 1625-49). The hinged lid is set with a diamond on an enamelled ground.  Commemorative jewellery depicting royalty was usually produced after the monarch's death, but was occasionally available during their lifetime, to be worn as a demonstration of loyalty. Commemorative jewellery, in the form of rings, lockets or hair clasps, was produced in great numbers after Charles' execution on 30 January 1649. Many examples have hinged lids: supporters of the Royalist cause, who wished to keep their allegiance secret, probably wore these during the Commonwealth under the rule of Oliver Cromwell. The Restoration of the monarchy in 1660 again produced great numbers of commemorative jewellery, made for those who claimed to have been Royalist supporters all along. Some rings commemorating Charles I were presented during his lifetime by his Queen, Henrietta Maria (1609-69), to Royalist supporters in appreciation of their continuing loyalty and financial backing, to be redeemed when the Civil War had ended.  Much commemorative jewellery is decorated with black enamel in the same fashion as mourning jewellery. The shoulders of this ring have a scroll pattern reserved in gold on a ground of black enamel, the diamond is bordered with black enamel, and the border of the bezel is decorated with a black and white enamelled pattern.  C. Oman, British rings 800-1914 (London, Batsford, 1974)

Memorial Ring Commemorating Charles I

Secrecy and devotion are intrinsically linked. Without the elements of love and fidelity that connect people, there is no honesty…

Bracelets 23.09.2013
Margaret Sinclair Clasp 1775

Margaret Sinclair Neoclassical Clasp 1775

The Neoclassical period of c.1765-1810 marked a period of intense mourning identification in the most beautiful and sentimental ways. If…

Bracelets 19.09.2012
In Spite of Envy Neoclassical Sepia Bracelet

In Spite of Envy, The Ideal Neoclassical Bracelet

Perhaps one of the most beautiful sentimental pieces ever conceived, this bracelet clasp is rich is affectionate symbolism and stunningly…

Bracelets 17.09.2012

To Bliss, A Sepia Mourning Bracelet Clasp

Pearls and hairwork are often two of the most common materials used in stringing a bracelet  from the neoclassical era,…

Bracelets 12.09.2012
Angel Neoclassical Sepia Bracelet

Weeping Angel Neoclassical Bracelet

“Angels Weep When Children Mourn” is one of the more unique statements that you may find on a Neoclassical jewel,…

Accessories 05.09.2012
Victorian Hairwork Fob Chain With Enamel

Art of Hairwork 5: Victorian Hairwork Fob Chain With Black Enamel Fittings

Symbolism in watch chains and their fittings are primarily the key identifier when it comes to many of the surviving…

Accessories 04.09.2012
Victorian Hairwork Fob Chain With Acorns

Art of Hairwork 4: Victorian Hairwork Fob Chain With Acorn Charms

There are several elements here that are intrinsic to Victorian style and fashion that represent the person, that involves not…

Bracelets 09.11.2011

In a 1789 Bracelet, Affection Weeps, Heaven Rejoices

Pearls and hairwork are often two of the most common materials used in stringing a bracelet  from the neoclassical era,…

Bracelets 21.09.2010
Eye MIniature Portrait Bracelet Georgian

‘Though Lost to Sight, To Memory Ever Dear’ Miniature Eye Portrait Bracelet

I’ve written quite a bit about eye miniatures and their use in mourning and sentimental jewellery. These are one of…

Miniatures 27.06.2010

Spotlight On: John Wood Dodge Miniature

18K solid case and clasp fittings elaborately engraved and enameled, housing portrait of (yet) unknown sitter of watercolor on ivory…