Very scarce brooch in in remarkable condition, antique mid-Victorian 14k yellow gold equestrian themed with horse shoes and riding crop. Genuine round faceted rubies and rose cut diamonds. Completely hand crafted with extremely high level of detail and artistry, all individually pieced construction. The brooch measures 1-3/4" x 3/4" x 1/4" thick, weighs 7 grams. Still has the original 4" long 14k gold safety chain and a surprise, on the back, a hidden locket compartment with the original bezel! Would have originally been used as a hair receiver (those sentimental Victorians were so clever!). The rubies and diamonds each measures between 1mm and 2mm and are all prong set, very high quality mounting and construction techniques. Softly satin frosted "Bloomed Gold" finish.
The piece is completely original with c shaped clasp, wide tubed hinge, and a metal pin stem that extends 4mm beyond the c clasp. No alterations or repairs, the diamonds and rubies are all original to the piece. All the stones are in extremely fine condition, the rubies have wonderful intensely saturated color and the diamonds are all clean and bright. Typical of the majority of authentic antique Victorian jewels (particularly hand crafted pieces such as this), the piece is not gold hallmarked, but it has been carefully tested by two separate independent jewelers for karat fineness and is guaranteed minimum 14k solid gold in content and purity. Has been cleaned very lightly and retains most of its softly aged patina. In outstanding extremely well babied condition, mid-Victorian circa mid 1800s. Truly delicious!
"BLOOMED GOLD"- The frosted finish or satin finish of bloomed gold is the result of bathing the gold in acid. This finishing technique is typically seen on turn of the century Victorian and Edwardian jewelry, although it dates back to its original use in the mid 1800s. The recipe involved boiling the gold in a mixture of salt, water, hydrochloric (muriatic) acid, and salt petre (potassium nitrate). The process created extremely tiny scarring in the surface of the gold which left a matte finish resembling peach skin- and referred to as "bloomed-gold". The finish was also used on only portions of a piece of jewelry, creating a dramatic contrast to a highly polished background or foreground.