Early Victorian Forget-Me-Not Ring
That blue and bright-eyed flow'ret of the brook,
Hope's gentle gem, the sweet forget-me-not.
Charming antique memorial ring in 18ct gold and enamel. The head features a little forget-me-not flower, set with diamonds over a pool of royal blue guilloché enamel, and a small glass locket compartment to the back allowing for a keepsake (a lock of hair, or similar) to be worn against the skin. The split shoulders display further enamel work, turquoise, perfectly complementing the rich yellow gold. Made in England during the early years of queen Victoria's reign - circa 1840.
The Victorians were big into symbolism and sentiment, and floral motifs regularly feature in jewellery and the decorative arts of the day. The Language of Flowers was a secret code that attached meaning to various flowers and plants The forget-me-not, as presented here, bore a simple and uncomplicated message of love. When combined with a lock of hair, an an absent lover, the flower would serve as love's reminder.
The forget-me-not takes its name from a tragic German folk tale set on the banks of the Danube. A young couple on the eve of their wedding day are taking a walk on the river bank when the bride spots a cluster of small blue flowers by the water. Her gallant fiancé reaches down to pick them for her but, losing his footing, he's swept away by the turbulent waters. With his last breath he managed to utter the words, "Vergiss mein nicht!" as the threw the flowers at the feet of his beloved. The anglicisation is generally attributed to Samuel Taylor Coleridge, who spent time in Germany and would almost certainly have become familiar with the tale.
Era: Early Victorian, circa 1840
Head: 9.4mm by 8.0mm
Ring size: L or 5.75 US. Resizable for £35
Stones: Rose cut diamond
Marks: None, tested as 18ct gold
Condition: Great antique condition. Enamel is in particularly good shape with some light surface wear and minimal losses to the edges
Full appraisal document provided with each item
This includes a valuation for insurance purposes, item specifics, date, and origins (where applicable)
Gemstones are tested by an accredited gemmologist (Cert GA, Gemmological Association of Great Britain)
Express shipping is free of charge and carbon offset
Tracked and insured with signature on delivery
UPS Express (International)
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Resizing takes 7-14 days
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Note: sizing may remove some of the patina (although we take every care to reduce this where possible)
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We offer detailed and accurate condition reports on each listing. These pieces are antique, vintage, or pre-loved, often over 100 years old so they're going to have lived a life. A healthy patina and the odd scuff/scrape are quite normal... it's part of their charm! Everything we present has been checked over by our jeweller and should be good for wear for many years to come (unless otherwise stated) but please remember to treat them with appropriate care and consideration for their age.
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