I'm unsure if this beautiful old Victorian to Edwardian era cameo was originally set in this jet teardrop or not, but it does look like it. And in fact, I am quite certain that it's the old setting, but that someone has added a silver bale at the top, along with the silver chain which both look rather new. The mounting is beautifully crafted and does show off the old cameo so well, it matters little if it's old or more recent. I think I'd have a jeweler re-mount the bale and use 18k gold, however, were I to keep and wear this one. When I first found it I was sure this was set into a big thick bit of tortoise shell, similar to another we had some time ago. But I do think this is not shell but is jet, or the black peat stone used in many Victorian jewelry items. I'll leave it to you to decide. I can tell you she's a gorgeous cameo - that's the easy part.
Very good to excellent condition, surely a souvenir of someone's Grand Tour, perhaps mounted later at home in England. There are no chips or cracks, no damage at all to note. The chain and bale are in silver, which always seems an odd compliment to something like this, and I think it's been added more recently. The cameo alone is 1 3/4" x 1 1/4" and extends 1/4" out from the black mounting. A very pretty and unique piece. Great gift idea!
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Antique French sterling silver, Georgian jewelry, sewing, Black Forest, etc 17th to 19th c. European
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