This is a late medieval gold finger ring, dating from 1450 - 1550 A.D. The ring is raised up from a hammered ingot, the wide shoulders hollow with the interior filled with a black pitch for stability and strength. The bezel would have once held a table cut diamond, the black pitch the favourite method for setting diamonds at this date (the reason why early diamonds are painted as black in portraits!) Such a ring would have been produced by an expert goldsmith, a very skillful accomplishment for a hand-hammered and raised ring made on an anvil with jewellers hammers and not solid cast (this would have made the ring extremely heavy for this size). The diamond (most likely the original stone having a black pitch interior) would have been tablecut, the use of diamonds in early engagement rings during the Renaissance may indicate this was such a ring - a very powerful piece of early jewellery that is in excavated condition. It has plenty of potential for a jeweller to reset a gem and repair the split on the bezel to hold the jewel. It will make an exceptional engagement ring if competently done!
OBJECT: Finger Ring
CULTURE: Late Medieval/Tudor period
DATE: c. 1450 - 1550 A.D.
RING SIZE: 5 7/8 (US) L 1/2 (UK)
SIZE: 26.60mm x 22.36mm x 2.28mm (bezel 11.92mm x 14.42mm x 8.55mm)
WEIGHT: 7.35 grams
PROVENANCE: Ex. European Private Collection, Eindhoven. The Netherlands
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