Cupid's arrow

Antique Black Glass, Gold & Pearl Love Arrow Locket, Circa 1860

The goddess of love Venus has a little helper, the winged Cupid. Cupid shoots arrows at people with a bow to spread love on behalf of Venus. But not only love: his quiver holds arrows with different kinds of tips. One half of the arrowheads is made of gold, the other half is made of lead. Struck by a golden arrow, people catch fire for each other. Pierced by a leaden arrow, they remain indifferent and unimpressed by the charms of another person. This theme also inspired the goldsmith of this locket in the years around 1860. The large oval pendant is made of deep black glass. The front presents a wreath of gold engraved with flowers in the center, in the center of which a small pearl shimmers. An arrow pierces it and it is also made of gold: it is the love-bringing arrow of Cupid. It decorates the locket and possibly even refers to the contents of the piece. Because on the back of the pendant you can open it: Behind a flap made of glass, a photo or a small gift can be stowed here, which can thus always be worn on the heart. Thus, the reference to love is combined with a personal secret, protected from prying eyes. The beautiful pendant with its overlays of gold is in first-class condition.

In the 19th century, lockets were undoubtedly among the most popular pieces of jewelry, enjoying the highest popularity among all social classes. Kept close to the heart, lockets could always keep alive mementos of loved ones or happy events, protected from prying eyes. When photography became affordable in the course of the century and the new light pictures replaced the previously common miniature paintings, the fashion arose to also carry these small marvels of technology in a locket. Depending on taste and purse, the jewelers and goldsmiths of those years made very different pieces from tombac, silver or gold.

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You can rely on our years of experience in the trade and our expertise as a professional art historians for reviews of the antique jewellery. As a member of various trader organisations and the British Society of Jewellery Historians, we remain committed to the highest possible degree of accuracy. In our descriptions, we always also indicate any signs of age and defects and never hide them in our photos – this saves you from any unpleasant surprises when your package arrives.

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We want you to be 100% satisfied! That’s why we examine, describe and photograph all our jewellery with the utmost care.

If for any reason you are still not satisfied, contact us and we will find a mutual solution immediately. Regardless, you can return any item within 30 days and we will refund you the full purchase price.