Sunday, May 18, 2014

Mastery of Design: An Italian Shell Cameo Necklace, 1810-20

Necklace of Carved Shell Cameos
Italy, 1810-1820
The Victoria & Albert Museum

This necklace comprised of carved shell cameos was made in Italy between 1810 and 1820 and depicts subjects such as cupids, pairs of doves and the altar of love.

Sentimental jewelry was reached an apex in the 1820s and was used to declare affection and devotion for family and friends (living and dead), as well as romantic love for a spouse, and loyalty to a monarch or a cause.

The necklace originally was hung with a large pendant—now missing.

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