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Rarities Antique Jewelry


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Victoria's Reign - Victorian Signed 'Wightman & Hough' Gold Fill Amethyst Paste Locket & Pearl Slide Chain. This stunning locket and chain is crafted from yellow and rose gold fill, the clip has a makers mark H.I.B. The locket is marked W & H, for Wightman & Hough. Featuring 10 genuine seed pearls, One oval cabochon amethyst paste gemstone, one oval cut faceted amethyst paste gemstone, 24 round antique cut paste gemstones, victorian styling, and quality craftsmanship. This beautiful duo, consists of a rose gold slide chain, which features a charming heart shaped slide.  The slide is expertly set with an oval purple paste gem, which is adorned by silver grey pearls.  The chain has a secure 'dog clip 'style clasp, which supports a beautiful locket pendant. The pendant is expertly bezel set with an oval cabochon paste gemstone which has a clear paste surround. The locket also exhibits beautiful delicate granule work, which adds character and texture to the locket. The locket has both orinal inserts present and marked W.H. The locket opens and closes well. This Victorian era locket and chain necklace is a highly collectible treasure from the past, to be cherished for many years to come. This is a beauty! 

Note: This slide chain can be worn with any of your favorite pendants, however worn with this locket, the necklace is just glorious!  It can be worn long or doubled for a layered look.  This locket is one of the nicest examples I have seen from seen from Wightman & Hugh. 

History: The history of gold-filled jewellery traces back to early 19th century England, where this technique was patented to create semi-precious and better-quality custom jewellery during the Victorian Era.

As long as gold filled pieces are well cared for, they can last a lifetime. Gold plated pieces, on the other hand, can last up to a year if kept away from water, wear, and heat. It's also worth mentioning that gold filled pieces with lower karat weight (9-14k) may be more durable than pieces with greater gold content. Victorian gold filled jewelry can last for centuries. 

Paste jewellery is a special type of flint glass that emulates a number of gemstones. The origins of Paste jewellery date back to the mid-18th century, to a jeweller named Georges Frederic Stras, who worked as a jeweller to the king when he moved from Strasbourg to Paris in 1724.

Pearls were presented as gifts to Chinese royalty as early as 2300 BC, while in ancient Rome, pearl jewellery was considered the ultimate status symbol. So precious were the spherical gems that in the 1st century BC, Julius Caesar passed a law limiting the wearing of pearls only to the ruling classes.

Granulation is a technique in jewellery making where you create tiny spheres of metal and then use them as decoration for your piece. It is a very effective way of adding texture to your designs. The technique of granulation is an ancient one.

In the history of the United Kingdom and the British Empire, the Victorian era was the period of Queen Victoria's reign, from 20 June 1837 until her death on 22 January 1901.


Measurements: Slide Chain 50"  Heart Slide 13.50 mm x 12.50 mm      Locket 17.00 mm x 28.00 mm 

Stone Size: Pearls 2.00 mm   Amethyst Paste (cabochon) 15.00 mm x 7.00 mm  Amethyst Paste (faceted) 6.00 mm x 4.00 mm   Paste (clear) 2.00 mm 

Weight: 42.80 grams 

Condition: Excellent  Note: One small clear paste gemstone replaced at some point. 

Origin: America, Rhode Island       Note: The locket is marked W & H Co within a heart on the inner panel, the mark of the distinguished jewelry makers Wightman & Hough Company from Rhode Island, active from 1856-1922, and well known for their fine quality lockets. 

Date: Circa 1880

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