C.1910 FRENCH FIX Pin/Brooch - Saint Bernadette & the Virgin Mary
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AGE: C.1910 or so
ITEM: A wonderful pin from France made of FIX that features two panels to the front. The first, the Virgin Mary in profile. The second, the Apparition at Lourdes between the Holy Virgin and Bernadette Soubirous (Saint Bernadette). Separating the panel is a bar composed of two Fleur de Lis. On the reverse are depicted a spray of lilies on each panel. Simple c-catch at the back to hold the pinstem in place.
CONDITION: Very, very nice. Tiny mark at the bottom left of the Virgin that probably shows darker than the rest of the metal. Seems to be a tiny stain or perhaps something that happened in the manufacturing process. Is not dirt or anything like that - just hard to explain. Good strike and detailing which is unusual for a piece such as this - most times, pieces were fingered and the features worn over time.
METAL CONTENT: French Fix (kind of a French pinchbeck). This is a metal combination that has the look/appearance of 18K gold but has a rose gold underlay. If the yellow gold wears, the rose gold appears giving the pin the most unusual color combination. However, the yellow gold layer was usually so thick that this usually never happened. Some dealers argue that FIX is a gold filled material, others will say it's a high gold overlay over a secret formula base. Whatever anyone decides, it is what it is - a piece of jewelry that has already lasted for many, many years with no dark spots!
HALLMARKS: FIX on the back. TAIRAC (designer) on both front panels. This is an early mark for the company indicating an early manufacture.
SIZE: 1-1/4" x 5/8" approx.
WEIGHT: 3.3 grams
FINAL COMMENTS: Ready to wear!
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