Description: Offering a stunning and very special, Victorian, mourning brooch in the shape of a Maltese Cross. The piece is composed of hand-carved, Whitby jet that has been mounted to a gold-metal backing that has been Japanned or coated with a black lacquer.
The front of the cross has a lovely, cross hatch design carved into the jet. There is a hair locket in the center of the cross that contains braided hair sealed under a glass crystal.
The locket is embellished with a beautiful, untested, chased gold border. Pin fixtures on the back include a tube hinge, a "c catch" clasp, and a wonderful long pin. Very likely English and made during the early-to-mid Victorian Era, possibly c. Nice, solid piece with some weight to it.
This is such a spectacular brooch that after I acquired it several years ago and put it up for sale, I took it down and decided to keep it for a while. I also thought it was glass jet at the time but came to learn via non-invasive testing that it's Whitby jet. Has wonderful, sharp, carved edges and a beautiful texture. I've enjoyed this rare gem over the last few years but now the antique jewelry gods require a sacrifice, so it needs a good home.
From my collection to yours. Approximate Measurements: 1.25 inches or 33 mm in diameter.
Pin extends 4 mm beyond edge of brooch. Weight: Approximately 12.6 grams.Condition: Good, antique condition with wear in keeping with age and use. Some nibbles here and there around the edges / arm tips but since the jet is mounted to a blackened, metal backing, it's not very noticeable in my opinion. Black coating on the back has worn down in some areas. Please use the photos as a guide as they form part of the description and the condition of a piece is subjective. Background: During the Victorian Era, jet jewelry was at its peak. It was worn both for fashion and for mourning. With the death of Prince Albert in 1861, jet became a jewelry staple and was worn by Queen Victoria and others at court as it was the only type of jewelry that could be worn at court for a period of time after Albert's death. Whitby jet is a type of natural jet that was quite desirable, but not everyone could afford it. There were a number of different types of faux jet including Vulcanite (a rubber product), bog oak (fossilized wood), pressed horn, and glass jet, for example. Any boxes or props pictured are for display only unless otherwise noted and are not included with this listing. But you must contact the store BEFORE you pay to arrange this. While the condition of each item is described in the listing, there may be other condition issues not listed, so use the pictures as a guide as they are part of the listing description. Feel free to ask any questions for clarification before purchasing. This item is in the category "Jewelry & Watches\Vintage & Antique Jewelry\Mourning Jewelry". The seller is "portalsoftimevintage" and is located in this country: US. This item can be shipped to United States, Germany, Canada, United Kingdom, France, Australia, Denmark, Romania, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Finland, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Estonia, Greece, Portugal, Cyprus, Slovenia, China, Sweden, Korea, South, Indonesia, Taiwan, South Africa, Thailand, Belgium, Hong Kong, Ireland, Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Italy, Austria, Bahamas, Israel, Mexico, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, Norway, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain, Croatia, Republic of, Malaysia, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Panama, Trinidad and Tobago, Guatemala, Honduras, Jamaica, Antigua and Barbuda, Aruba, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Saint Kitts-Nevis, Saint Lucia, Montserrat, Turks and Caicos Islands, Barbados, Bangladesh, Bermuda, Brunei Darussalam, Bolivia, Egypt, French Guiana, Guernsey, Gibraltar, Guadeloupe, Iceland, Jersey, Jordan, Cambodia, Cayman Islands, Liechtenstein, Sri Lanka, Luxembourg, Monaco, Macau, Martinique, Maldives, Nicaragua, Oman, Pakistan, Paraguay, Reunion, Uruguay.