This super Essex crystal pin has a beautifully depicted hunting dog with wonderful shading and flow to the artistry giving an illusion of silky fur. Note the subtle but realistic dimension to the dog. You can just see the mobility of his upper lip, feel the curve of his forehead and cheek as well as being able to tug on that floppy ear. A very lovely dog done by a extremely talented artist. It was then secured in a 14kt. gold pin with a simple collar mounting rim. For those of you not familiar with Essex crystals there is a little explanation at the end of the listing.
The crystal is in excellent condition with no cracks, nicks, chips or deep scratches. With a 10 power loupe you can find normal and expected tiny faint surface scratches from use over the years. I found one tiny abrasion (photo # 5 bottom right corner) on almost the edge of the curve of the cabochon located above his nose. It measures approximately 1/16" long by less then 1/32' at it's widest point and is extremely minor. There is a brown discoloration seen on the left side of the pin in all the photos with a close up in photo # 5. There is a bit more, much lighter in color, more like a haze located at the back of the dogs neck by the collar. This is NOT part of the paint used on the dog-the artistry is ALL intact! Rich and a jeweler he consulted felt it was dirt inside the pin that had merged due to someone attempting to clean the pin incorrectly in either an ultrasonic machine or in liquid. DO NOT put essex crystals in ultrasonics or immerse in any liquids - hand clean them ONLY! The mother of pearl is also all intact with no chips or cracks. The gold pin is in excellent condition with no rips, cracks, dents, holes, deep scratches, abrasions or repairs. The pin hinge, pin stick and locking clasp are all original and in smooth working order. The pin stick is straight with a good point.
The clasp has a 14kt. mark as seen in the photo. Rich has also acid tested the mounting and will guarantee a minimum of 14kt. The pin measures 1 3/8" long by 1" tall and is approximately 3/8" deep thru the center of the crystal. A fabulous pin for an Essex crystal collection or to wear by either sex.
An Essex crystal is a rock crystal (clear quartz) cabochon with an intaglio (recessed) carving done on the flat backside. The intaglio is then painted so when the crystal is viewed from the front the image has a realistic dimensional effect. The backside is sealed with a plain sheet of mother-of-pearl (or another material) to preserved the painting as well as providing a wonderful background. This super art form originated in Belgium around 1860 and was made famous in England. It was used for jewelry, including buttons, as well as decoration on every day items. The subjects most common for men were horses, dogs, foxes and birds and for the ladies florals. Essex crystals retained their popularity until poorly made glass and plastic imitations were extensively made in the 20's.