This ca. 1880 black Victorian hair ornament is made of gutta-percha, a material made from rubber from Southeast Asia. It has been hand-carved into a spray of ivy and embellished with faceted medallions of shiny, polished black celluloid. The comb is in two parts; the prong section is hinged to the front and held with tiny hand-made screws. Black jewelry such as this was popularized by Queen Victoria and is sometimes called mourning jewelry. There are no marks on this comb; it could be from either England or the U. S. The comb measures 4" X 1 3/4" X 1/2" thick when folded; the prong section is 3 5/8" long by itself. When unfolded, it is 6 1/4" long. This unusual comb is in excellent original condition.
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