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Necklace

  • Place of origin:

    Italy (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1870 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Castellani (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Woven gold band, with a fringe of hollow gold pendants

  • Museum number:

    638-1884

  • Gallery location:

    Jewellery, Rooms 91 to 93, The William and Judith Bollinger Gallery, case 20, shelf D, box 4

The archaeological discoveries of the 19th century led to a greater awareness and understanding of ancient jewellery. For the first time these intricate gold pieces were collected, studied and published, and both the originals and the published illustrations of them were a rich new source for designers of jewellery. The resulting 'archaeological-style' jewellery was fashionable from around 1860 until at least the 1880s. The Italian firm of Castellani was at the forefront of this style. Castellani both made jewellery and owned an extensive collection of antiquities. This necklace is a copy of a Greek original from around 330-300 BC that was excavated at Great Blinitza, in the Crimea in 1864, now at the Hermitage Museum.
Possibly the version shown by Alessandro Castellani at the International Exhibitions in Philadelphia in 1876 and 1878.

Physical description

Gold necklace. The medallions of the pendants represent Thetis riding a sea-monster and carrying the armour of Achilles; hung with rosettes and bud-like drops.Applied plaque with the Castellani monogram. Made after Greek originals of about 330-300 BC

Place of Origin

Italy (made)

Date

ca. 1870 (made)

Artist/maker

Castellani (maker)

Materials and Techniques

Woven gold band, with a fringe of hollow gold pendants

Marks and inscriptions

Monogram of two 'C's
Addorsed Cs in appied wire (not any of the marks illustrated in Munn, 1984)

Dimensions

Length: 35.0 cm, Height: 5.1 cm, Depth: 1.2 cm

Object history note

Purchased from the sale of Alessandro Castellani's effects, Rome 1884.
Made after Greek originals of about 360 BC excavated at Great Blinitza in South Russia in 1864 and acquired for the Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg. The pendants (or similar specimens) were shown by Castellani at the Paris Exhibition of 1878.

Castellani Jewellery Exhibition RF.2003/302

Descriptive line

Necklace. Italy, 1864-76; made by Castellani.
Gold, chased, with granulation and filigree

Materials

Gold

Techniques

Chased; Filigree; Granulation

Subjects depicted

Armour; Sea-monsters; Antique; Classicism

Categories

Jewellery; Myths & Legends; Europeana Fashion Project

Collection

Metalwork Collection

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