Generations united

Large luxurious emerald ring with antique old cut diamonds in gold, 1950s

In previous generations, fine jewellery was rarely ever purchased on a whim. Although many jewellers with large prêt-à-porter selections were operating by the end of the 19th century, the old tradition of having a piece created according to one's own unique taste was still alive. Most commonly, old pieces that were deemed unfashionable were brought to a goldsmith to have the precious stones re-set into a piece of jewellery that satisfied the taste of the day. This tradition continues in parts until today with re-worked heirlooms, resulting in pieces that bridge tradition and modernity. This emerald ring is a particularly beautiful example, illustrating that the above approach was still common in the 1950s. It unites materials spanning several generations into a single historic piece. The centre of the ring is set with a large natural emerald of intense green colour within a gold setting, as well as with two cushion-shaped old mine cut diamonds in silver settings. Ten more diamonds are set onto the ring shoulders and stylised leaf ornaments, effectively bathing them in light. According to its design, craftsmanship and hallmarking, the ring was created in Czechoslovakia in the 1950s, yet the two large old mine cut diamonds date to the 19th century, most likely before 1890. At the time the ring was created, cuts such as this were no longer in use, suggesting that the old mine cuts were sourced from an even older heirloom. The ring is in excellent condition. The quality of the materials has been asserted by a renowned independent gemological laboratory, and their certificate will be supplied with the ring.

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 course of the 17th century. The nobility of the Baroque period developed a taste for glittering gemstones. Rose-cut diamonds, whose many facets reflected candlelight beautifully, were particularly 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 of 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 brilliant 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 diamonds, but several generations of continuous improvement of the cutting technique were necessary until the Old Mine Cut became the Old European Cut, and finally the modern full cut in the 1940s.

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.