Brooch

late 18th century (made)
Brooch thumbnail 1
Brooch thumbnail 2
Image of Gallery in South Kensington
On display at V&A South Kensington
Jewellery, Rooms 91 to 93 mezzanine, The William and Judith Bollinger Gallery
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

Memorial jewellery to honour the dead is one of the largest categories of 18th- century jewellery to survive. Many mourning jewels have inscriptions that record the name and dates of the dead person.

From 1760 there was a new vogue for memorial medallions or lockets. These became especially popular in Britain, though similar work was produced throughout Europe.

The lockets could be bought ready made, and the designs were standardised. Neo-classical motifs of funerary urns, plinths and obelisks joined the more traditional cherubs, angels and weeping willows. Hair was preserved as curls within the locket, or cut up and used to create designs.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Gold with plaited hair, hair in design, ivory painted in watercolour
Brief Description
Gold with plaited hair, hair in design, ivory painted in watercolour with a miniature of a woman seated by a Tomb bearing the initials IG and inscribed Not lost but gone before. A cherub above bears a scroll inscribed To bliss, England, 1775-1800
Physical Description
Gold with plaited hair, hair in design, ivory painted in watercolour with a miniature of a woman seated by a Tomb bearing the initials IG and inscribed Not lost but gone before. A cherub above bears a scroll inscribed To bliss
Dimensions
  • Height: 4.1cm
  • Width: 2.2cm
  • Depth: 0.7cm
Marks and Inscriptions
  • 'Not lost but gone before' (Inscribed on tomb)
  • 'To bliss' (Inscribed within a scroll)
  • 'IG' (On tomb)
Object history
Part of a group of memorial and mourning jewels bought from Dr Marco Guastalla, acting on behalf of 'an English lady residing in Italy' (museum numbers 846-1888 to 989-1888)
Subjects depicted
Summary
Memorial jewellery to honour the dead is one of the largest categories of 18th- century jewellery to survive. Many mourning jewels have inscriptions that record the name and dates of the dead person.



From 1760 there was a new vogue for memorial medallions or lockets. These became especially popular in Britain, though similar work was produced throughout Europe.



The lockets could be bought ready made, and the designs were standardised. Neo-classical motifs of funerary urns, plinths and obelisks joined the more traditional cherubs, angels and weeping willows. Hair was preserved as curls within the locket, or cut up and used to create designs.
Collection
Accession Number
920-1888

About this object record

Explore the Collections contains over a million catalogue records, and over half a million images. It is a working database that includes information compiled over the life of the museum. Some of our records may contain offensive and discriminatory language, or reflect outdated ideas, practice and analysis. We are committed to addressing these issues, and to review and update our records accordingly.

You can write to us to suggest improvements to the record.

Suggest Feedback

record createdJuly 19, 2006
Record URL