A stunning Victorian 18K gold locket in the shape of an elongated heart and centering a painted enamel plaque. The heart is delicately engraved along the outer edges and around the enameled plaque. The sentimental enamel illustrates a lovebird surrounded with bowers of roses delivering a love note. It is very finely worked with outstanding detail and bright, cheerful colors. The outer edge of the image is framed in opaque black champleve enamel. The heart is surmounted with an ornate pierced gallery that rises to the bale. The back of the locket is engraved to match the front, but in place of the enamel plaque is an ornately engraved gold door. The hinged door opens to reveal a hidden locket. It might have been used to hold a photo, but because of the shape it was more likely used to store a lock of the beloved’s hair. The quality and design of the enamel would suggest that the piece is Swiss. Tested and guaranteed 18K gold.
Origin: probably Switzerland, ca. 1850. Condition: enamel is perfect, a small ding on the left edge of the heart. Size: 1-1/8” wide; 2” long (not including bale). Weight: 9.0 grams.