A collision between Victorian elegance and Art Nouveau creativity could be a disaster, but in this brooch the combination is dynamite. The pansy was a very common motif for Victorians since in the language of flowers, which they so adore, pansies stand for `thoughts,' or, when given to someone, `think of me,' a sentiment appropriate not only for family and friends but even for a young man to give a young woman without raising too many eyebrows. Victorian pansies stay close to nature, but one look at this one and the Art Nouveau influence is immediately appreciated! Though still featuring the realistic black markings on actual pansies, the relatively ordinary flower has been transformed into something extraordinary by the firm of Erhlick (or Erhlich) and Sinnock. The iridescent enamels so typical (and beautiful) of American jewelers at this period of time blossom onto this pansy, shading delicately to a dusty pink and shades of violet on the edges of the petals. Close examination reveals concentric lines leading to the center of the flower engraved onto the gold underneath the enamel, lending more texture and more play of light over the pin. The gold itself was hand-wrought, each petal individually crafted to give the bloom a fuller, lusher look. When turned over, this pin reveals it is actually multi-purpose, a watch pin allows the pocket watches of the period to be hung below the pin.
Please note that the opalescent beauty of this brooch also makes it incredibly difficult to photograph accurately, so I've tried to give several angles in several kinds of light to try to capture the full optical effect.
Condition: Has E.S. mark and 14 kt mark. Small seed pearl in center, most likely natural due the age of the piece, but I can't guarantee that. Extremely tiny chip or two along petal edges. Back pretty darn tarnished. Measures ¾" x ¾". Please note that the last picture is taken through a magnifier to make it easier to see the E.S. mark for Erhlick and Sinnock.
Item ID: 006
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