Georgian 18th c. Crystal & Enamel Locket
Small lockets with faceted rock crystal compartments were a specific type fabricated during the mid to late 1700s. Thought to have come from the Stuart tradition of honoring Charles I, these crystal heart- shaped lockets often incorporated flat cut garnets or enamel work and displayed the popularity of what may be termed the “delicate jewel”. Later lockets were given as a token of love or affection.
This Georgian locket is particularly ornate. It features the motif of the heart surmounted by a garnet encrusted crown which is symbolic of loyalty. Undulant lines and S-curves mark the open work form covered in white and green enamel and punctuated with flat cut garnets set closed back with rub over collets.
Surrounding the faceted crystal compartment are ribbons of predominately white enamel lettered in gold with “Mon amour gage de” which roughly translates as “I pledge my love”. The crystal locket compartment is hinged at the top and most likely had a lock of hair or plait of hair in a decorative design.
Measurements: 1-3/16 inches (3.0 cm) in length by 15/16 of an inch (2.3 cm) in width, by 1/4 of an inch (0.5 cm) in depth. This antique locket pendant has a weight of 4.5 grams (2.9 dwt).
Condition: Good for its age; three garnets replaced; two with edge chips; some uneven enamel surface in the word “gage”; a bit of wear to gold rub over setting of locket back.
Date & Origin: Circa 1760 - 1770. English in origin (The use of French words and phrases on English jewelry was common during this period).
Overall Scale: Small