Magnificent Navette

Antique Shuttle Ring With Old Cut Diamonds, England Circa 1905

The special fascination of historical diamonds is their individual character. No stone is like the other: Color, proportion and brilliance are inherent to each stone differently. Created in a time when diamonds were not yet shaped on a piecework basis, it was the task of the cutter to determine the optimal dimensions for each diamond. The ring presented here brings us 23 such diamonds with individuality and history. They are stones that are distinguished by their individual cuts. The diamonds were united in the first decade of the 20th century to form this ring in a classic navette shape. They are set in platinum and set á jour in the precious metal, meaning that the settings are open at the back to allow plenty of light to reach the stones. At the same time, the ring face has been worked flat so that the ring wears comfortably. The ring, which came to us from the south of England, is in first-class condition and delights with its magnificent pavé setting.

In ancient times, diamonds were valued primarily for their incomparable hardness. As symbols of invincible strength, their beauty was secondary at best. In fact, early diamonds do not appear at all attractive to the modern eye. Medieval cutting techniques also did not allow for spectacular light reflections, and the widespread table cuts only brought out the brightness and color of the stones. All this changed in the graduated 17th century. The nobility of the Baroque period developed a taste for glittering gemstones. Rose-cut diamonds, whose multiple facets beautifully reflected candlelight, were especially popular. In the middle of the century, a first, early brilliant cut developed, called the Mazarin cut after the influential Cardinal Jules Mazarin, characterized by a crown with 17 facets. By the end of the century, these diamonds were then replaced by a new shape, named the Peruzzi cut after its inventor. Vincenzo Peruzzi was a gem cutter from Venice who increased the crown of the diamonds by additional facets to a total of 33, thus increasing the fire of the stones enormously. However, these early diamonds were not standardized in terms of the number and shape of the facets. Each stone was cut in such a way that as much substance as possible could be preserved. New diamond deposits in Brazil in the second half of the 18th century then led to a cut shape that became known as the Old Mine Cut. These diamonds are already very similar to today's full cut brilliant cut diamonds, but several more generations of continuous improvement in cutting techniques would be needed before the Old Mine Cut became first the Old Cut, and finally in the 1940s the modern Full Cut.

We want you to be 100% satisfied! For that reason, we examine, describe and photograph all of our jewellery with the utmost care.

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.

Should you for some reason not be satisfied, please don’t hesitate to contact us so that we can begin to find a solution together. In any case, you can return any article within 30 days and we will refund the full purchase price.


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.