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Bodice ornament

  • Place of origin:

    Portugal (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1770 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    Topazes and rock crystal set in silver

  • Credit Line:

    Given by the American Friends of the V&A through the generosity of Patricia V. Goldstein

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Jewellery, Rooms 91, The William and Judith Bollinger Gallery, case 12, shelf D, box 2

This bodice ornament is composed of a bow and a symmetrical arrangement of flowers. The large coloured stones are golden-yellow topaz, sometimes described as 'sherry topaz'. The colourless stones are a mixture of colourless topaz and rock crystal. The colourless topaz have a slight pink tinge.

There was a massive export of topaz and other stones from the Portugese territory of Brazil in the eighteenth century and it is possible that this ornament was made in Portugal. The use of cheaper colourless stones, rather than diamonds, is probably the reason the ornament has survived instead of being broken up.

Physical description

Bodice ornament of topazes and rock crystal set in silver

Place of Origin

Portugal (made)


ca. 1770 (made)



Materials and Techniques

Topazes and rock crystal set in silver


Height: 7.0 cm, Width: 8.8 cm, Depth: 2.1 cm

Descriptive line

Bodice ornament of topazes and rock crystal set in silver, made in Portugal, about 1770.


Topaz; Rock crystal; Silver


Jewellery; Metalwork; Accessories; Europeana Fashion Project


Metalwork Collection

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