Full image caption
Demi-parure of brooch and earrings, gold set with table and briolette-cut aquamarines, rubies and foiled quartz (in one earring, possibly a replacement). For this fashionable English set of the 1850s the gold has been stamped with relief decoration to give the impression of being more substantial than it really is. Before the discovery of rich gold deposits in California in the 1860s the metal was very highly priced and such devices were employed even for pieces set with precious stones.
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