A Victorian sterling silver pebble brooch. Annular shaped set with a mosiac of hardstones formed by a saltire cross of pink fossil coral marble with wedges of orange fossil coral marble and yellow jasper with black onyx interstices framed by an engraved floral scroll work border. The hardstones backed by slate. Circa 1860. Measurements, diameter 2 1/2" ( 6.3 cm ). Condition, Good, there is a small chip to the corner of one of the pink fossil corals and a small incipient fissure to the slate backing. The silver has been acid tested as sterling silver. A good example of the mid nineteenth century vogue for jewellery set with indigenous hardstones. Fossil coral marbles ( limestone containing coral fossils ) were a feature of this type of jewellery from the county of Devonshire. For similar examples see ' Jewellery in the Age of Queen Victoria' British Museum Press 2010, pages 487-8.
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