This time I shall only add the measurements of this most unusual and very special piece, and shall let the appraisers words do the listing. The listed price is what the appraiser felt was replacement cost, if one could find a similar item.
History Of The Item: Hello again. You have a great eye for very special pieces. This is a beautifully crafted 19th century Italian micro mosaic depiction of the Roman ruins. Micro mosaic, as you know, is centuries old, with pieces going back to the Byzantine period. In 18TH through 19th century, Italy was still producing intricate ornate and stunning items with tiny fragments, hand inlayed in a large variety of settings. More contemporary pieces no longer have the minute work, but are mass produced, less carefully constructed items. All very pretty but tourist trade quality.
Appraiser Tips: Do not polish the metal casing. If you feel that it is absolutely necessary, give it a gentle wipe over with a silver polishing cloth to remove any surface marring. This will remove them without turning the surface into a shiny bright metal. Silver polish which is more abrasive will remove the patina.
Research Sources: There are many fine visual examples of early micro mosaic art on Google images. I have been dealing in similar items for many years now and love to have them in my inventory whenever possible. It is not easy to find them here in North America.
Appraiser Comments: This is a delicately crafted 19th century Italian micro mosaic set in a 20th century sterling silver base. The base is stamped with a 925 sterling silver assay mark. The interior frame surrounding the mosaic is actually 18 k gold, as designated by the 750 stamp. The impressed mark says simply " miniature roman mosaic, 19th century". The sterling base is 20th century, and based on the wear pattern, tiny scratches etc which show us that this has been handled and moved around on hard surfaces for years, along with the very valuable setting, I would say c. 1920 - 30. The composition is perfect, the gold frame enhances the colours in the Tesserae, and this has an aesthetically pleasing appearance. The fact that the mosaic is set in both sterling silver and gold is a reflection of the importance the maker saw in this little treasure.
Replacement Cost: $ 2,850.00
It had been my great pleasure to assist you again.
Thickness of item: appr 3/8"(solid, heavy) Q: Width of item: appr 3 1/8" Micro Mosaic- 3/4" Q: Length of item: appr 3 1/8" micro mosaic- 9/16"
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