A rare Georgian Vauxhall glass mourning brooch with a locket front containing a curl of hair. These old Vauxhall jewels rarely lasted due to the fragile nature of glass that was manufactured in the Vauxhall glassworks, a factory situated in the Lambeth area of London during the 18th century.
The black glass was very expensive at the time and it was popular choice for mourning jewelry during the Georgian age.
Circa 1810 the brooch features a glass fronted compartment in the front containing a poignant lock of dark hair tied together with a cotton thread. The hair is surrounded by a decorative rococo Pinchbeck gold frame. The faceted black glass beads are set on a japanned (black lacquered) metal base in a Maltese cross shape, the metal looks like silver gilt. A handmade tube hinge, pin and curling c-clasp completes the brooch, with the silver pin stem curved at the hinge, there is room behind to thread a ribbon or chain for wear as a small pendant.
SIZE: 1-3/8" wide, 1-1/8" high (35x28mm)
DATE: Georgian, circa 1810
ORIGIN: British Isles
WEIGHT: 6 grams
CONDITION: Very very good with signs of age and wear as expected in a piece this old. The Vauxhall glass appears all original and complete, nibbles along the edges, as expected, but nothing detrimental. The clear glass panel is in perfect condition with the hair well preserved. The black lacquer is worn off the back showing the metal underneath. The pin back is in perfect working order.