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Shoe buckle

  • Place of origin:

    England (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1760 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    Silver set with pastes and amethysts

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Mr Robert Holland

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Jewellery, Rooms 91, The William and Judith Bollinger Gallery, case 14, shelf D, box 16

Gold or silver buckles for shoes were in fashion for most of the 18th century. They gave the finishing touches to elegant dress and were one of the few pieces of jewellery worn by men as well as women. Gentlemen wore matching shoe and knee buckles.

Making buckles became a highly skilled craft at which English silversmiths and jewellers excelled. Exquisitely wrought designs, glittering pastes and precious stones reflected the status of the wearer as well as the occasion. Cheaper and plainer versions were made of steel, brass and other metal alloys. By 1790 shoe buckles were falling out of use, except as part of ceremonial or court dress.

This buckle is one of a pair, with Museum no. 899A-1877.

Physical description

Shoe buckle in the form of a bow, silver, set with pastes and amethysts.

Place of Origin

England (made)


ca. 1760 (made)



Materials and Techniques

Silver set with pastes and amethysts


Length: 5.41 cm, Width: 5.7 cm, Depth: 2.03 cm

Descriptive line

Shoe buckle in the form of a bow, silver set with pastes and amethysts, England, about 1760


Silver; Foiled pastes (glass); Amethyst

Subjects depicted



Jewellery; Fashion; Metalwork; Footwear; Europeana Fashion Project


Metalwork Collection

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