Turquoise Dream

Large Belle Époque pendant with pearls in gold, Great Britain circa 1890

What a feast of colour! The large pendant here flaunts and delights with its large turquoise in its center. Its color is intense and reminiscent of the waters of the Caribbean. Fine dark inclusions enliven the surface of the stone. A fine frame of yellow gold sets the turquoise and supports the warm colourfulness of the precious piece. At the same time, it leads to the elaborate framing of the turquoise, which unfolds before our eyes an enchanting composition of tendrils, leaves and a large bow richly set with pearls. Made of high karat gold, the object was created in late 19th century Britain. At that time jewellery in warm shining yellow gold was in fashion, richly set with countless pearls. Especially necklaces and pendants were made in this technique, like this magnificent piece. Unlike in France and Germany, for example, where very similar forms can be found in the so-called "Garland Style", the cool colours of silver and platinum popular there were far less in demand in Great Britain: yellow gold remained popular on the island right into the Art Deco period. British jewellery of the late 19th century is thus a mirror of its time of origin. Not only does its form and material testify to a certain distance from the fashionable developments of the rest of Europe: the often so rich, still impressive and enchanting decoration with pearls and precious coloured stones was at the same time a testimony to the position of the Empire: pearls and precious stones poured into Great Britain from all the colonies - and the jewellery of the ladies in London showed this wealth and the pride in it.

The beauty of exotic gemstones plays an extraordinary role in the motifs of jewellery. Especially works with Persian turquoise were extremely popular among the bourgeoisie of all times, as the mineral was charged with meaning due to its colour. It reminded the bourgeois of the 19th century of the blossoms of a forget-me-not, which is why turquoise itself, in the language of jewels, took on this speaking meaning. Diamonds, meanwhile, have always been the gemstones associated with imperishability, which is why this beautiful ring was probably once a gift of love. But the history of the name of this stone is also interesting. As an early name, the ancient Greek καλάϊνος Kalláïnos (iridescent blue and green) can be assumed with relative certainty (from Pliny, Naturalis historia). Then, about the beginning of the 13th century, the French term Turkoys appeared, which from the early 15th century changed to the term pierre turquoise, which translates as "Turkish stone". However, this neologism is based on a misunderstanding, because turquoise was at that time only imported from the area of today's Iran into Turkey and traded there.

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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.

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.