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Ring

  • Place of origin:

    Europe (west, made)

  • Date:

    15th century (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Unknown

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Gold with a setting for a stone (now missing)

  • Museum number:

    653-1871

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

The hoop of this gold ring is decorated with unusual openwork reef knots. Projecting claws on the bezel suggest that it was originally set with a gemstone, now missing.

This ring forms part of a collection of over 700 rings and engraved gems from the collection of Edmund Waterton (1830-81). Waterton was one of the foremost ring collectors of the nineteenth century and was the author of several articles on rings, a book on English devotion to the Virgin Mary and an unfinished catalogue of his collection (the manuscript is now the National Art Library). Waterton was noted for his extravagance and financial troubles caused him to place his collection in pawn with the London jeweller Robert Phillips. When he was unable to repay the loan, Phillips offered to sell the collection to the Museum and it was acquired in 1871. A small group of rings which Waterton had held back were acquired in 1899.

Physical description

Gold ring, with a four claw bezel, the stone missing, decorated with foliated shoulders with Hercules (reef) knots

Place of Origin

Europe (west, made)

Date

15th century (made)

Artist/maker

Unknown

Materials and Techniques

Gold with a setting for a stone (now missing)

Dimensions

Height: 2.8 cm, Width: 2.3 cm, Depth: 1.3 cm

Object history note

ex Waterton Collection

Descriptive line

Gold ring, with a four claw bezel, the stone missing, decorated with foliated shoulders with Hercules (reef) knots, West Europe, 15th century

Subjects depicted

Knots (motifs); Foliation (pattern)

Categories

Jewellery; Metalwork

Collection

Metalwork Collection

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