A cameo is a form of glyptography, or bas-relief carving, most often cut into glass, hard-stones, and shells. Artworks were crafted to create two layers on one piece of material, the top of which protruded from its background, creating a multi-dimensional artwork. These detailed reliefs were often used to adorn pieces of jewelry, including brooches, necklaces, bracelets and rings. The earliest cameos took inspiration from prehistoric petroglyphs, which documented important religious and symbolic iconography onto rock faces.
Despite its popularity in previous periods, the most well-known era for cameo collection was the 19th century, inspired by royal cameo collectors Queen Victoria and Emperor Napoleon Buonaparte.
During the Victorian Era, cameos with historic subject matter were popular. This fascinating cameo ring has the countenance of a man, evocative of a Hans Holbein the Younger portrait. Converted from an antique 18 karat gold stick pin, we have paired it with a replica shank in 14 karat yellow gold. Highly detailed for such a small piece, he is like a miniature work of art for your collection!
Size (can be resized): 7
Weight: 2.7 grams
Materials: Gold, Carved hard stone cameo
Metal: 18K yellow gold (original element), 14K yellow gold (replica shank)
Condition: Very good antique condition commensurate with age and wear