Necklet thumbnail 1
Necklet thumbnail 2
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Image of Gallery in South Kensington
On display at V&A South Kensington
Jewellery, Rooms 91, The William and Judith Bollinger Gallery

Necklet

1780-1800 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

This necklace with its strictly symmetrical bow from which hang five loops suspending an equally symmetrical bow and pendant is a characteristic neo-classical Portugese design of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. It forms part of a demi-parure - a half set of jewels - which includes a pair of long earrings of pendoloque type (long pear-shaped pendants beneath bows). Gone are the freedom of design and sometimes asymmetry of the mid-eighteenth century jewels influenced by the rococo.

The effect is of brilliance and light. The stones are white and set in silver to enhance their whiteness. They might have been diamonds, but, if they had been, they would probably have been reset into new fashions many times since. This set of jewels owes its survival to the fact that the stones are white topaz.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
White topaz set in silver
Brief Description
Necklet, white topaz set in silver openwork, with a long pendant, Portugal, 1780-1800.
Physical Description
Necklet, white topaz set in silver openwork, with a long pendant suspended from a complex bow.
Dimensions
  • Height: 174mm
  • Width: 287mm
  • Depth: 16mm
Gallery Label
  • [Bury, Shirley. Jewellery Gallery Summary Catalogue. V&A, 1982, Case 16 Board B no. 2] NECKLET with TWO ALTERNATIVE PENDANTS and PAIR of EARRINGS White topaz and pastes set in silver openwork, the necklace with a long pendant suspended from a complex bow. The earrings with similar drops. FRENCH: late 18th century. Bequeathed by Mrs. A.E. Stuart M.104-1930(I982)
  • Bows and Flowers 1750-1800 The development of the brilliant-cut in the late seventeenth century made diamond jewels even more spectacular. The 58 facets of the cut increased the sparkle of the diamond, creating scintillation and fire (4). Diamonds were set in silver to emphasise their whiteness. Elegant, gem-studded jewels featured floral, star, feather, tassel and festoon motifs, in both symmetrical and asymmetrical compositions. The French were leaders in jewellery production, and their splendid designs were copied across Europe. Books with designs for ornament and jewellery spread French styles, as did the travel of French craftsmen, who took their skills to the courts of Europe. 9. Necklet and earrings Portugal, 1780-1800 Topazes set in silver Museum no. M.104 to B-1930 Bequeathed by Mrs. A.E. Stuart(2008)
Credit line
Bequeathed by Mrs A. E.Stuart
Object history
Bequeathed by Mrs Ada Eliza Stuart, who died in 1928. In her will described as 'my old Spanish necklace'.
Historical context
This necklace with its strictly symmetrical bow from which hang five loops suspending an equally symmetrical bow and pendant is a characteristic neo-classical Portugese design of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. It forms part of a demi-parure - a half set of jewels - which also includes a pair of long earrings of pendoloque type centred by bows. Gone are the naturalism and sometimes asymmetry of the mid eighteenth jewels influenced by the rococo.



The effect is of brilliance and light. The stones are white and set in silver to enhance their whiteness. They are cut like brilliant-cut diamonds and might have been diamonds, but, if they had been, they would probably have been reset into new fashions many times since. This set of jewels owes its survival to the fact that the stones are white topaz.
Summary
This necklace with its strictly symmetrical bow from which hang five loops suspending an equally symmetrical bow and pendant is a characteristic neo-classical Portugese design of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. It forms part of a demi-parure - a half set of jewels - which includes a pair of long earrings of pendoloque type (long pear-shaped pendants beneath bows). Gone are the freedom of design and sometimes asymmetry of the mid-eighteenth century jewels influenced by the rococo.



The effect is of brilliance and light. The stones are white and set in silver to enhance their whiteness. They might have been diamonds, but, if they had been, they would probably have been reset into new fashions many times since. This set of jewels owes its survival to the fact that the stones are white topaz.
Bibliographic Reference
Bury, Shirley. Jewellery Gallery Summary Catalogue. London: V&A, 1982. p. 100, Case 16 Board B no. 2
Collection
Accession Number
M.104-1930

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record createdJune 30, 2005
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