Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Gifts of Grandeur: The Wild Jewel, c. 1590

"The Wild Jewel"
Turquoise Cameo of Elizabeth I set in gold with diamonds, rubies and pearls.
The Victoria & Albert Museum

Known as “The Wild Jewel,” this pendant jewel in gold and enamel is set with diamonds and rubies and encloses a turquoise cameo of Queen Elizabeth I.
  It is hung with pearls.

The jewel was made circa 1590 in England.  It was lent to the Victoria and Albert Museum for the Special Loan Exhibition of 1862 by James.W. Wild.  Mr. Wild was closely connected to the Museum and was also the architect of the Bethnal Green Museum and of the V&A's Architectural Courts.

According to the tradition in the Wild family, the jewel, along with a lace christening robe, was given by Elizabeth I to a god-daughter of the family.

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