A stunning Art Nouveau 18K yellow gold brooch featuring an enameled and engraved gold portrait of the Greek goddess Athena against a royal blue translucent guilloche enamel background. The goddesses’ magnificently engraved helmet is topped with a winged dragon and is set with a small rose cut diamond. The armor on her tunic and the embroidery along its collar are also worked in engraved gold. The quality of enameling to the face and the drapery of her clothes is absolutely top-notch. The rim of the medallion is punctuated at regular intervals with natural pearls. The back of the brooch retains the original c-clasp and extended pinstem, both of which are stamped with French hallmarks. Athena, the goddess of wisdom, was a popular figure in late Victorian mythological iconography.
Origin: France, ca. 1890. Condition: excellent; a tiny loss of enamel at the bottom edge of the tunic visible under 10x magnification. Size: 1-3/32” diameter. Weight: 8.4 grams.