Friday, December 17, 2010

Victorian Garnets .. the jewels of January

This most fabulous necklace probably was worn to many balls and fancy parties during the 1880's ( victorian period). This incredible old necklace is made of a chain of individual five rose cut garnet rose bud shaped links that lead to beautiful starbursts of gorgeous garnets. 

Additional rose cut garnets suspend from the starbursts and are also graduated in size.The the open back setting is a great way to help identify this as a period piece. Back in the day, Garnets were mounted in low and higher karat yellow gold, gold plate and mixed metal settings. I am fairly certain this is not solid gold so that eliminates one of the types of setting. 

Folkfore had is that Garnets were thought to be a cure for blood disorders or anger. And Victorians were quick to follow folklore and snake oil elixers. They were thought to be lucky talismans, thought to help bring victory.

Garnets have adorned many a royal garment, including those of Queen Victoria, Mary Queen of Scots and the wives of the Russian Tsars.worn as an adornment on the garments of royalty. Garnet is the stone for those born under the signs of Capricorn and Aquarius (official birthstone for January). The deep red color also resonates with the passionate nature of Scorpio and the fiery nature of Aries.

Bohemian Garnets are real garnets (often reproduced as glass) that were mined from a certain mountain region in Bohemia, now long exhausted of its garnets, never to be found again. They are characterized by their intensely rich deep red color. These are deep blood red and are all hand cut. 

This necklace also has a garnet flower shaped hidden slide in clasp. The wearable length of this most desirable piece of jewelry is 18" with the longest drop being 1 1/2" long. 

This has never been offered for sale before and has been in my private collection for well over 30 years. I can guarantee this is an antique and not a reproduction.

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