Caroline's Jewelry with a Past is offering a sterling silver gold plated Lion of St. Mark stick pin circa 1880. The stick pin features a winged lion holding a book (the Bible) and has a halo. The design represents the apostle St Mark. It is also the symbol of the city of Venice and before that the Republic of Venice. This piece might have been a souvenir from the Grand Tour. The lion is 9/16" tall X 3/4" wide (maximum dimensions). The piece is overall 2-9/16" long.
Venetian tradition states that when St. Mark was traveling through Europe, he arrived at a lagoon in Venice, where an angel appeared to him and said "Pax tibi Marce, evangelista meus. Hic requiescet corpus tuum." or "May Peace be with you, Mark, my evangelist. Here your body will rest." St. Mark's body was moved from the church in Alexandria to Venice and is buried in the Basilica of St. Mark's in the famous square also named St. Mark. He is represented as a lion and is a typical Christian iconography. The lion is one of the four living creatures described in the book of Revelations as having a place around the throne of God. The lion also symbolizes the power of the Apostles' word, the wings symbolize spiritual elevation, and the halo is the traditional Christian symbol of holiness. The lion symbol also expresses the significance of majesty and power, while the book expresses the concepts of wisdom and peace and the halo gives an image of religious piety.
Gold plating is a method of depositing a thin layer of gold onto the surface of another metal, most often copper or silver, to make silver-gilt. It is done by chemical or electrochemical plating.
The silver content of this piece has been tested using standard accepted testing methods, such as acid testing.
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Caroline's Jewelry with a Past has been on the web since 1995