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Plaster cast

Plaster cast

  • Place of origin:

    Paris (probably, made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1900 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    Cast plaster

  • Credit Line:

    Given by an anonymous donor

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Beginning in the Nineteenth Century and continuing well into the Twentieth, plaster casts of jewellery were kept as a three-dimensional record for the manufacturers of each piece of jewellery they made. Only a small proportion of the number that must have been made survive. The annotations on them, although often only partially legible, make clear their position at the centre of the design and manufacturing process - as an archival record but also as a source of ideas for subsequent designs. In this case the cast has been taken before the stones, which will provide colour to the flags, were mounted into their settings. The crest has not been identified and it is not known what event the brooch was made to commemorate.

Physical description

A rectangular slab of greying plaster with rounded corners, bearing in relief the impressions of a small commemorative brooch which has a ribbon bow and a crowned shield with a star upon it at the centre and two crossed flagpoles from which flags descend to left and right. Two further impressions show the side aspect and a repeat of one end of the front face of the brooch. On the back is an incised number. A wire loop is attached at the top for suspension.

Place of Origin

Paris (probably, made)


ca. 1900 (made)



Materials and Techniques

Cast plaster

Marks and inscriptions



Height: 7.5 cm, Width: 4.1 cm, Depth: 1.7 cm

Object history note

The brooch was bought by the donor's daughter, Jo Whalley of the V&A's Conservation Department, from the dealers Aria in San Francisco, in 2004. They had acquired it, with others, in Paris.

Descriptive line

Paris, ca.1900



Subjects depicted





Metalwork Collection

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