Georgian Sepia Mourning Pendant Young Lovers

A beautiful Georgian era double-sided mourning pendant, crafted during the last decade of the 18th century. The workmanship is comparatively finer than many mourning pendants from this era. The frame is of a bright solid 15k rose gold (rather than 9k gold as was customary). The execution of the sepia painting is extremely fine, featuring detail brushwork without a hint of careless hurry. The image of the young lovers locked in an embrace, with the young man clutching the arms of the reluctantly departing maiden, suggest this pendant was made to mourn the passing of a young woman. The fields of wheat behind the couple is a reference to biblical passover and the last supper of Christ, when unleavened wheat bread became the medium through which human suffering merges with that of divine deliverance. Bushels of wheat in mourning jewelry was thus a symbol of faith in the redemption and resurrection of departed souls.

The pendant’s reverse side contains neatly interwoven hair of brown and dark blond (possibly a merging of the couples’ hair), along with a border of blue enamel and the initials DJH in reticulated gold.

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