- Apr 17, 2002
I just posted my new jewel on the Show Us Your Chrysoberyls thread in CS, but I thought you antiques fans might enjoy seeing it too. It's a pair of Victorian brooches attached with a chain. I think it's a marriage rather than an original pairing, but a happy one. One brooch is set with four rhodolite garnets and five chrysoberyls; the other is set with four rhodolite garnets and two white sapphires. I can't decide whether the brooches are from c. 1860s-80s or late Georgian--I think probably the later period. The piece came with one of those silly appraisals claiming it's worth seven times what I paid for it, but the appraisal's description seems competent. (To be fair, I bought it for the melt value of the gold, assuming the description of the gold content is accurate, so it probably IS "worth" more than I paid.) One brooch is 18K and the other 14K, according to the appraisal. At least one clasp is a replacement. The larger brooch is tarnished on the back and one side, as if it lay for years half exposed to something acidic or outgassing. I can't decide whether to try to clean off the tarnish or leave it as it is. I think it may be flashed or gilded with higher-karat gold, and I'm afraid that any attempt to polish it will remove the gilding/flashing and just make it look uneven. I'm also worried about getting polish behind the stones' closed settings. (Does anyone have an opinion?) The photos show the color and the tarnish pretty accurately. It's very sparkly and rich looking; I'm inclined to leave it be.