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  • Place of origin:

    Dublin (made)

  • Date:

    25/07/1849 (designed)
    ca. 1851 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    G. & S. Waterhouse (makers)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Parcel-gilt metal

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Jewellery, Rooms 91, The William and Judith Bollinger Gallery, case 20, shelf A, box 2

This brooch, modelled on the Irish 'Arbutus berry' brooch dated from 700-800 A.D, was made by the firm of G&S Waterhouse of Dublin who specialised in reviving and adapting antiquarian Celtic jewellery. The design for the brooch was registered on 25th July 1849 and the model was shown at a number of exhibitions.

In Ireland scaled-down reproductions of celebrated medieval brooches in the Dublin collections were sold from the 1840s as shawl-pins and brooches. The V&A (then called the Museum of Manufactures) bought examples of these reproductions from the 1851 Great Exhibition and the 1853 Irish Industrial Exhibition.

Physical description

Shawl brooch, parcel-gilt metal, penannular, decorated with three modelled berries. After the 'Arbutus berry' brooch, Ireland, about 700-800. Registry mark shows that the design was registered on 25th July 1849.

Place of Origin

Dublin (made)


25/07/1849 (designed)
ca. 1851 (made)


G. & S. Waterhouse (makers)

Materials and Techniques

Parcel-gilt metal

Marks and inscriptions

A Registry mark shows that the design was registered on 25th July 1849.


Height: 10.1 cm, Width: 5.7 cm, Depth: 1.3 cm

Object history note

Made by G & S Waterhouse of Dublin. Examples of this design were shown at the Great Exhibition of 1851 and the Irish Industrial Exhibition of 1853. The original label and the first report of the Department of Practical Art recorded that it was bought for £4 14s 6d. This led to an advertisement by Waterhouse which noted the prices the Department had paid for a number of its reproduction brooches and encouraged the public to reflect that

'If her Majesty's Commissioners thought these matchless Brooches worthy of a place in the Museum surely no Lady or Gentleman could select a nicer present, either as a specimen of Irish design or workmanship. The prices are now much relaxed in consequences of the great sale and the facilities we have of manufacturing them on the premises: they vary from 10s to £10 10s each. The Arbutus pattern in silver is now only 2l. 2s., instead of 4l. 4s.

Descriptive line

Copy of the 'Arbutus berry' brooch, parcel-gilt metal, penannular decorated with three modelled berries, made by G. & S. Waterhouse, Ireland (Dublin), design registered 25 July 1849





Subjects depicted

Berries; Penannular


Jewellery; Metalwork


Metalwork Collection

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