Circa 1930-1940, this lovely shell cameo captures a young Victorian woman beautifully coiffed and dress for the ball.
Carved from carnelian shell (Cassis Rufus) and set in 800 silver, this cameo offers a brooch/pendant combination. The frame measures 1-9/16" tall (41mm) by 1-1/4" wide (32mm). It is fitted with both a locking brooch pin and its original hide away bail.
The carving captures a moment in time circa 1860-1885, referred to as the Grand Period of the Victorian Era, a time of splendid dress and engaging jewels. The young woman's hair is swept up with curls at the crown and tendrils gracing her neck. She wears a beaded necklace, perhaps made of ivory, with a matching pair of grand drop earrings, as well as a strand of beads braided into her hair, surely indicative of being dressed in grand evening attire. She wears a strapless gown that softly drapes around her shoulders.
The cameo is securely set with four prongs on both the front and back sides. Twenty sparkling marcasites accent the frame's curves in four groups of five. The frame is hallmarked simply "800". The cameo weighs 8.9 grams.
The shell is fairly thick and quite sturdy. When candled to the light and magnified, we see minor growth plates within the shell to the left side of the carving. These are internal, do not break the surface and are not visible with the naked eye and only when magnified against light. There are no chips or cracks in the shell and the carving is crisp and without any age/wear related smoothing. The shell is supple and offers a nice soft gloss.
All is in excellent condition with the frame, brooch pin and bail is perfect working order. The cameo and frame have been professionally cleaned and conditioned so that this beauty is ready to wear and enjoy upon arrival.
This cameo will be delivered in a lovely presentation case, perfect for gift giving and storage, along with a copy of our easy cameo care instructions.