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Late C19th to Early C20th Australian White Cliffs Opal Gold Brooch

In Fine Jewelry > Opal Jewelry > Show & Tell and Fine Jewelry > Arts and Crafts Jewelry > Show & Tell.
Opal Jewelry51 of 109Rhoda Wager (Circle of ) Silver and Opal BroochThe Southern Lights Necklace - 64 carats of South Australian Crystal Opal, set in Platinum and Diamonds
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    Posted 6 years ago

    kiwipaul
    (117 items)

    This is a classic style of Australian jewellery seen from the late C19th to early C20th.

    Its has a large 27 x 12mm White Cliffs opal doublet of about 10cts, in a hand fabricated gold brooch. These early doublets are usually very high quality, with a thick layer of opal cemented to a base of opal potch. They were often made by skilled German gem cutters based near the opal fields.

    The little leaves surrounding the opal are in tricolour gold, being yellow, rose and white gold (actually an early form of white gold with a high silver content that was referred to as green gold).

    Virtually all early Australian jewellery was hand crafted, and often has a strong similarity to Arts & Crafts pieces. These applied leaves on colonial pieces predate the use of a similar leaf motif by Rhoda Wager, who arrived in Australia some years later.

    At the time this brooch was made, I'd say 1890 to 1910, opals with colour like this were a sensational new discovery.

    The world had seen nothing like them before, and the owner of this brooch could've worn it anywhere in the world with patriotic pride, as an example of just what Australia was capable of producing.

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    Comments

    1. Peterdrury Peterdrury, 6 years ago
      now that is realy beautiful!
    2. kerry10456 kerry10456, 6 years ago
      kiwipaul, again another outstanding example of these.....do you have your own mine? Just joking, please don't take offense. But love seeing all these wonderful cuts and sets. Your collection is "Top Shelf" for sure. Thanks for sharing this and the others
    3. vetraio50 vetraio50, 6 years ago
      It is just GLORIOUS !!!!!
    4. Peasejean55 Peasejean55, 6 years ago
      I agree with the above statements, beautiful.
    5. kiwipaul kiwipaul, 6 years ago
      Hi Kerry, thanks for the compliments, I realised a while ago that I had the makings of a collection that told some of the history of Aussi opal, so I've gone after pieces that filled in the gaps. Don't have an opal mine, but I'm pretty good at mining the interweb.
    6. Agram.m Agram.m, 6 years ago
      Stunning so beautiful !
    7. kyratango kyratango, 6 years ago
      Awsome and glorious piece!
      In total love with all your opal collection!!!
    8. ho2cultcha ho2cultcha, 6 years ago
      wow! great pinfire and flash! [i'm trying to impress you w/ terminology i learned when i was 16, and haven't used since!]
    9. kiwipaul kiwipaul, 6 years ago
      Hey ho2, what would be really impressive would be if you could get a pic of that opal table and put it on CW, that would be really something to see!
    10. ho2cultcha ho2cultcha, 6 years ago
      Hi kiwipaul.

      my uncle died and i haven't been in contact w/ my cousins in a long time but will try to reach them. they sold off a lot of his stuff, so i don't know if they still have it.

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