French 19th C. Gold Lyre Motif Earrings
For hundreds of years, now and again, classical themes were inspiration for jewelry. In Victorian times various subjects were revived from archeology, mythology, and architecture. These earrings take the theme of a lyre expressed in a coherent manner with the overall design of an earring that is superb. The gold work is done in repoussé (gold which has been work and pushed out from the back). The top is a cluster or flower with a center of vibrant, translucent emerald paste. So rich that you will never be able to tell the difference between a real stone without the use of a loupe.
The drop is an elongated lyre form with sinuous S curves and central strings. Flourishes, scrolls, texture and embellishments make every square bit of surface sumptuous. The central bottom is highlighted with a square cut emerald paste in a closed foiled bezel, and on each side a diminutive half pearl. Of French origin with the gold standard mark of an eagle and several other marks that are indistinguishable. In very good condition with minor wear to the stones; the top emerald paste has a tiny chip visible only with magnification; a few very minor dents also visible with magnification, and some very slight bending of the gold on the lyre edges above the pearls. A small pin size hole on the reverse. Several tiny pin holes are in the center of each flower for the heat of the goldsmith’s torch to be expelled – this is part of the design of the earrings.Otherwise, in remarkable condition with original ear wires.
Dating to circa 1840 France. So wonderful to find tops still intact and this delicate hollow metal work so well preserved after many years. The scale is flattering--not too long or too short measuring 2-3/8 inches long (6 cm), 2-1/16 inches without ear wires (5.3 cm) and just over 5/8 of an inch at the widest (1.6 cm). The green and gold combination and the shape next to the feminine profile make these earrings just superb.