I'm always fascinated, having seen the horror a volcano can do (Pompeii comes to mind), to realize that there's always also beauty and creativity that comes from such events in time. The lava cameos are spectacular reminders of the sublime nature of the geological phenomenon of volcanic eruption. Truly made of volcanic lava, mostly from Vesuvius in the south of Italy (yes, of Pompeii fame), these are true works of art. Deep bas relief carved sculpture of a Classical beauty, very well modeled and with beautiful hair and ornament, this extra large lava cameo is a fine Victorian to Edwardian era Grand Tour souvenir jewelry specimen. The artistry of these old lava cameos reminds one of the architectural busts that grace the old Roman buildings and interiors, and the plaques that fill the museums, though those are mostly in marble, but the same attention to detail in the sculpting comes through on this cameo. The 12k gold mount to which she has been set is a fitting framework for her, as well. And like the marble Roman sculptures, the noses of which are sometimes damaged as a symbolic wartime 'defacement' of the Roman culture, she's got a little damage to her nose, as well. But this just makes her all the more like those ancient Roman sculptures, don't you agree? I love this one!
Good to very good condition, with a nod to that rub of her nose. Otherwise she'd rank excellent, as there are no cracks or other flaws to report. The 12k yellow gold mount is in fine condition, retains the guard chain to prevent you from losing this one when you wear it. Mid-1800s, we'd say, and a wonderful shade of taupe/carmel.
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Antique French sterling silver, Georgian jewelry, sewing, Black Forest, etc 17th to 19th c. European
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