This is a large early Victorian or Georgian period detailed carved mother of pearl cameo necklace set in an engraved silver plate setting and attached to a long silver plate chain. The oval cameo features a man and woman couple in colonial dress walking arm in arm with a village scene behind them. The man's outstretched arm is holding his hat. The cameo is framed by a plain gold washed bezel, surrounded by a flat silver plated setting with decorative engraving and a varied scalloped edging, and flat across the bottom edge. The open back shows a very early tabbed attached of the cameo. The rectangular attachments on the back may be later alterations, but they permit the cameo to be attached to the necklace as it is, but also to be detached and worn as a large slide - perhaps on a velvet ribbon. The chain is also silver plate and appears to be contemporary to the cameo. The chain is composed of small flat lobed 'caterpillar' links interspersed with larger hollow decorative links. The large links have a pattern of tiny crosses on the reverse side.
The cameo alone measures 1.25" x 1.625". The cameo and its setting measure 2.125" x 2.875". The necklace chain measures 40" in total length and can be worn doubled around the neck though there is no clasp. Each 'caterpillar' link is .5" long and the larger decorative links are 1" long x .5" wide.
Condition: There is wear to the silver plate that I find quite acceptable - even desirable - in a piece of this age. There is some green patina on the back of the large links in the chain most notable near the tiny holes that are part of the hollow construction on the back side.
This very long and large pendant necklace is what I call a "belly beater", but is easily worn shorter by doubling the chain. I speculate that it could have once been a belt that was converted into a necklace. The mother of pearl cameo is exceptionally fine.
Item ID: O11bbn1111
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