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Victorian Archaeological Revival pendant

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BelleEpoque's loves20 of 710Cameo Lava Stone Silver Ring High ReliefFor anyone who loves antique jewelry through the ages !
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Posted 1 year ago


(103 items)

I haven't been buying much jewelry since retiring, but this lovely pendant called to me, especially as it is in its original fitted leather box. It is definitely Victorian Archaeological Revival and has a flavor of Castellani and Giuliano, but, based on its fitted case, it is likely the work of Robert Phillips.

The pendant is 18K gold with wonderful ovals of teal, white, and green enamel. There are multiple types of twisted and granulated goldwork around the banded agate and some of the enamel has individual gold granules. There is a compartment containing hair in the back. I would circa date this to the 1860s. The pendant is 3" long and the central section is 1 1/4" in diameter. Unfortunately, the chain for the pendant is gone... ;-(

The box is marked on the inside of the lid:

[Crown symbol]
23 Cockspur St

Phillips Brothers, also known as Robert Phillips, was founded by Robert and his brother Magnus at some point before 1839. According to the 1841 census, Magnus was much older than Robert (40 to his 26), and was classified as a silversmith, whilst Robert was a watch maker. Magnus died in 1847, and the 1851 census records Robert, by now 36, as having been born in Abergavenny, Monmouth, and describes him as a goldsmith and jeweller. Magnus’s place in the business is later filled by Robert’s son, Alfred (born 1845/46). In 1869 the name of the firm changes to Phillips Brothers & Son to reflect Alfred’s becoming a partner with his father; he takes over completely in 1884, Robert having died in 1881.

Mary Haweis mentions ‘Messrs Phillips of Cockspur Street’ in her 1878 book, The Art Of Beauty: ‘Under the direction of Messrs Phillips, the most perfect models are sought for the ornaments they furnish. Museums and picture galleries are ransacked for devices of necklaces, earrings and pendants…. I saw facsimiles of exquisite Etruscan and Greek collars in gold, every detail being carefully studied, and reproduced after the manner of the ancients.’


  1. Celiene Celiene, 1 year ago
    Wow. Fro the looks of the box, the chain must have been quite substantial. Nice piece!
  2. ho2cultcha ho2cultcha, 1 year ago
    the enamel is pretty amazing, as is the agate!
  3. martika martika, 1 year ago
    Very beautiful piece!!!
  4. kyratango kyratango, 1 year ago
    Aaah! Splendid piece, does it fit in etruscan revival style?
    Inspired from the bullae pendants/lockets?

    For me, having the original case is a big plus, even if the chain isn't present anymore:-)
  5. vetraio50 vetraio50, 1 year ago
    A Substantial Jewel !!!
  6. Bluboi Bluboi, 1 year ago
    Thanks for the Loves and comments!

    Kyra, I agree with you regarding style -- Etruscan Revival (rather than Egyptian or Renaissance).
  7. kiwipaul kiwipaul, 1 year ago
    Stunner! Beautifully made, and congratulations on your retirement.
  8. antiquerose antiquerose, 1 year ago

    Beautiful piece, just stunning!! Amazing COLLECTION !!
  9. Bluboi Bluboi, 1 year ago
    Thank you for the "Happy retirement" wishes. Still figuring out what to do with myself!
  10. Gillian, 4 months ago
    Good job that Robert didn't have a passion to be a Milliner!

    A splendid piece of all that is luxurious and lavish, that someone (or more than one) had laboured over for a long time. Amazing.

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