Georgian Scottish Thistle Citrine Conversion Ring

A marvelous and unique conversion ring, featuring a c. 1830s Georgian ring face set with a foiled 10-carat golden citrine reverse-carved with a Scottish thistle. The carving workmanship is intricate and full of verisimilitude. The practice of reverse-carving can be found on later Victorian essex crystal jewelry; however, it is rare to find earlier Georgian pieces with such decoration on colored gemstones. The setting is further decorated with heavily chased and repoussé floral motifs. The material is 9k rose gold with a thick layer of higher-carat yellow gold wash (typical “gold coloring” practice for the era). The ring face was originally a lace pin; it was professionally laser soldered to a heavy solid 14k gold shank with openwork trifurcated shoulders. Weighing an impressive 11.4 grams, this ring is very heavy, and makes a substantial statement when worn.

The thistle is the national flower of Scotland. According to lore, sleeping Scottish warriors were saved from ambush when an invading Norse army trod into the spiky plants, their anguished cries giving away the enemy position. The invaders were consequently vanquished and the trusty thistle became a regional symbol.

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