In Middle Ages Europe, the wearing of a brooch was very fashionable, with the buckle pinned at the neck as a fastener. Medieval brooches were modelled in different shapes, with designs raging from simple to more elaborate ones, as seen on this fine example. Some brooches would have been inscribed with religious or devotional preyers, or with messages referring to love and friendship. Popular gemstones used to decorate such miniature piece of jewellery were usually pearls, amber, corral or jet, as they were easily sourced in Europe. Royalty and nobility would have worn jewellery produced from silver or gold with gemstones to display their wealth.
Medieval Silver Brooch with Garnets
An extremely fine Medieval tear-drop shaped silver-gilt brooch, with its body embellished by an intricate decoration rendered in filigree and granulation technique. The extraordinarity of this brooch lies on the two pink garnet insets, with the top one held in place by a high gold cell. A free moving pin is attached through a pierced hole to the side of the brooch. The back of the brooch is unadorned. Tear-drop shaped brooches were popular in Middle Ages Europe between 1220 and 1400 AD, however the majority of examples recovered have lost the original semiprecious stone insets.
Provenance: From a private Wiltshire jewellery collection; acquired on the UK and European art markets between 1986 and 1994.
Condition: Extremely fine, with some loss of gilding.