Judy Jay's

Time Dances By


Phone: 210-690-8454

Fax: 210-699-4492

Cameos: CA058

CAMEO MYTHS MINGLE ( Victorian Shell Cameo Brooch ): The Victorians visiting the “Great Exhibition of the Industry of All Nations” in 1851 marveled at the attainments of their age. Characterized by determination for supremacy and the desire for “making it big”, Victorian jewelry became larger and bolder. By the second half of the 19th Century, the Cameo brooch had become an essential item of feminine adornment. The Victorians were rather less concerned with mythological accuracy, instead requiring their cameos to follow the new aesthetic of Romanticism. This large and dramatic Victorian (c. 1870-90) shell cameo brooch has united two classical mythological subjects although I’m not certain of the direct connection. In the right foreground, the large profile appears to be Ceres (Greek – Demeter), with twin stalks of wheat in her hair. She was the goddess of life, death, rebirth, fertility and the passing of seasons. (Busy lady!) To the left, behind Ceres, we see a pretty Bacchante, a female follower of the hedonistic god of the grape, Bacchus. Both ladies are dressed in the Grecian manner. Set in a jeweler tested 18KT “broken branch” framework, this brooch is well executed and striking. On the back there is evidence of two old repairs that are well done and do not show from the front. The C-clasp is a replacement. Condition: Excellent. No chips, cracks or stress marks. Nice coloration. Size: 2 7/8” high, 2 1/2” wide, 1/2” deep.

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