A balmy summer night

Wonderful antique diamond brooch of orientalism, around 1890

A crescent moon shines out at us with this brooch of silver, gold and fine old-cut diamonds. We feel transported to a balmy summer night. As today, people in the years around 1890 - at the end of an eventful century full of technical innovations - longed for the tranquil and at the same time adventurous and exotic faraway places as an escape from the constraints of life in the present. 67 glittering diamonds have come together to form a graceful crescent moon. The material combination of our brooch made of gold and silver was widespread before the invention of white gold, when platinum was not yet known to be processed: It was meant to make diamonds shine brighter, not tint them through the warm gold. Eleven beautifully cut old-cut diamonds sparkle in the centre, accompanied by rose-cut diamonds on the left and right of the crescent moon. Jewellery with symbols such as the star and the crescent moon are evidence of the Oriental fashion of the mid-19th century. In contrast to the centuries before - the Turks were still standing outside Vienna in the 18th century - the Ottoman Empire was no longer seen as a threat, but as a desirable, foreign and exotic counterpart. Especially after Prussia's closing of ranks with the Ottomans in the Crimean War of the 1850s, people loved the Orient with all its foreign characteristics, which was then extensively travelled and explored. Jewelry such as the present brooch illustrates this Orientalism, as do the great paintings of the art exhibitions of those years. The moon is beautifully preserved and came to us from London. Its hallmarks, meanwhile, show that it had been worn in France for some time before.

In the late 19th century, especially in the years around 1890, we find numerous photographs, drawings, but also paintings with the motif of the crescent moon. For example, the so-called "Paper Moon", a crescent moon cut out of cardboard or wood, was a popular prop for traveling photography studios. Most people did not own a camera at the time and usually had their pictures taken sitting on the moon at fairs, and many of these photographs have survived as collectors' items to this day.

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.