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  • Place of origin:

    Italy (made)
    Parma (worn)

  • Date:

    1800-1867 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    Faceted garnet beads with a clasp of gilt metal set with black plaques, possibly of oxidised silver

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

The dominant colours in Italian traditional jewellery are red and gold. Coral was the most popular material for necklaces, but garnets were also sometimes used, as here. Most Italian traditional necklaces are made of beads, in designs which have been worn for centuries.

Garnet beads were more common elsewhere in Europe, particularly in the Germanic regions. They were always faceted in the 19th century, to make use of their high natural brilliance.

This necklace was bought for £2 12s as part of the Castellani collection of Italian Peasant Jewellery at the International Exhibition, Paris, 1867.

Physical description

Necklace of five strings of faceted garnet beads, with oval snap clasp. The clasp is decorated on the front with an imitation filigree design, set with three black plaques representing stylised flowers.

Place of Origin

Italy (made)
Parma (worn)


1800-1867 (made)



Materials and Techniques

Faceted garnet beads with a clasp of gilt metal set with black plaques, possibly of oxidised silver


Length: 50 cm shortest length, Width: 10.5 cm from top string to bottom string, at centre, Depth: 0.7 cm

Descriptive line

Necklace of faceted garnet beads, Parma (Italy), 1800-1867.

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

'Italian Jewellery as worn by the Peasants of Italy', Arundel Society, London, 1868, Plate 2
For a later example, showing the same use of multiple strands of facetted garnet beads, see:
Catalogue, ‘l'Ornamento Prezioso’, Rome/Milan, 1986, Tab.24, fig. 108


Garnet; Gilt; Silver


Jewellery; Metalwork; Traditional jewellery (Europe)


Metalwork Collection

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