Preserved in the long term

Wide Victorian silver chain with medallion pendant, England circa 1885

The 19th century was a time of rapid technical developments. The industrial revolution had tremendously accelerated the previously leisurely pace of life, new forms of communication and above all the development of the railway had brought the world closer together. But even if the revolutionary innovations sometimes left contemporaries in breathless consternation, they were integrated into everyday life relatively quickly over time. In the field of commemorative culture, the invention of photography in particular changed previous customs. Over time, the initially expensive photographs became more and more affordable, so that in the course of the century they became affordable for more and more classes. The present piece of jewellery shows the great esteem in which photographs were held. A large medallion is attached to a decorative, elaborate chain of silver balls and rings. Its front oval lid is decorated with fine engravings: here an enchanted water landscape unfolds with a flying swallow. The exotic leaves of the plants and especially the bamboo but also the house on the shore make it clear that a Far Eastern scenery is depicted here (cf. "Learn more"). The necklace and the corresponding medallion were made in Queen Victoria's Britain in the years around 1885. Its form follows a fashion that had already emerged around 1860 and remained popular until the end of the century: the wide chain is relatively short and carries a large medallion. The chain and pendant are connected by a large spring ring, which is worn as an ornament on the front of the chest. This unusual piece of jewellery came to us from London. Cf. for example David Bennet and Daniela Mascetti: Understanding Jewellery, Woodbridge 2010, p. 160f.

At the end of the 19th century, the art world looked to Japan. It was only in 1854 that American gunboats had forced the opening of the country, which had been closed for centuries. Woodcuts, prints and drawings were exported all over the world aboard the sailing ships in the following years and exerted a lasting influence on artists van Gogh, Manet, Degas and later Paul Klee. Referred to as Japonism, these influences can be found in the designs of Art Nouveau as well as in the works of Art Deco with its preference for all things exotic.

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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.