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Mercurial Light - Antique Cut Steel Earrings

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Cut steel has a long history of its very own admirers—revered in the 17th Century and quite popular during the Victorian period. Used as an alternative for the look and impact of early cuts diamonds, cut-steel in jewelry became a highly refined process. Each small steel bead or stud is hand cut, faceted, polished, and painstakingly riveted onto a metal (typically brass) back piece.

As if gazing into a star map of the planets in our galaxy, curved forms create a wonderful design of three concentric ovals composed of individually set multifaceted cut steel beads. A single row of beads grows to three to perfectly balance line versus curve. A six petal flower accents the shared center axis of the elliptical rings as each articulated form freely sways with any delicate movement made. Resist the temptation to shade the eyes as the light dances nimbly from one facet to the other.

Measures 2-1/4 inches in length by 1-1/4 inches wide (5.4 cm by 3 cm). The condition is very good to excellent with nothing of consequence to note; no rust or missing rivets; later date 15k gold ear wires. Most likely English or French in origin, circa 1850 – 1860.

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