A wonderful large sized hand painted Georgian portrait miniature 9ct gold & glass locket with the reverse of the locket featuring beautiful hairwork.
Dating to around 1790 the subject of the watercolour is a gentleman, possibly a nobleman. He is painted against a blue sky and he is wearing a navy blue coat and a white neckcloth with his hair powdered. The portrait is skillfully painted and he reminds us of a little King George III or George Washington, he is certainly of that era.
The other side of the locket contains beautiful hair work in two shades of hair colour against a pearly pale blue & peach shaded glass background. The hair is worked into elaborate curls and decorated with gold thread and seed pearls in a pattern known as the Prince of Wales feathers. Although the presence of pearls alongside hair hints at tears for the deceased this isn't necessarily a mourning memento, jewellery incorporating hair was worn as sentimental keepsakes of those still alive too.
A wonderful piece, steeped in history. Portrait miniatures were used as portable and wearable reminders of loved ones long before the advent of photography and they offer us a fascinating glimpse into the past!
MATERIALS: 9ct rose gold, acid tested
MEASUREMENTS: 3-3/4" (9.5cm) high including bail, 2-3/4" (7cm) wide
WEIGHT: 65.7 grams
DATE: Georgian, circa 1790
CONDITION: In very, very good antique condition, with the hair work beautiful and free of dust and debris. On the portrait side there is small area of fading the the bottom of the gents coat which looks like shading as opposed to any real damage. The glass is intact with no cracks, please see photos. This is a rather large locket, pendant style with the glass fixed in place so it doesn't open.
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