This sublime pendant features six rare table-cut diamonds, framed by a filigree-style metalwork surround sometime referred to in literature as a croix 'à la Jeanette' or ‘croix papillon’, simply translated as a butterfly pendant.
The name is derived from the tradition whereby working girls, usually hired on St. John’s Day, purchased a croix à la Jeanette with their first salary.
Circa 1750, this pendant is in excellent condition, with the reverse given as much attention and care as the front. The reverse of the pendant is as detailed as the front.
These were usually worn on a ribbon in the style of a choker necklace. We think a slate grey silk ribbon as pictured makes for a chic pairing, although a black velvet ribbon would certainly be considered classic.
Although this pendant doesn't feature any hallmarks or control stamps, we believe it to be of Belgian origin.
This style of pendant is seen in France starting around 1840, and throughout Northern Europe, as far as Flanders.
Period: 18th Century Flemish, Georgian (1720-1840)
Style: gold & silver, featuring 25 additional smaller rose-cut diamond chips, sometimes also called senailles. The six largest diamonds are table-cut diamonds.
Dimensions: 3 inches length x 2 inches width
Additional Notes: There are examples of this style in various institutional collections. A photo of the example at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris illustrates the popularity of this style. You will note, however, that the large, white table-cut diamonds on this jewel indicate the high social standing of the owner. Moreover, the reverse of the jewel is as beautifully crafted as the front.