This is a superb medieval gold finger ring, dating to the 12th - 13th century AD. This example is still set with the original blue sapphire gemstone, with a rubbed-over mount. The natural sapphire is heart-shaped, highly polished, and of excellent colour.
This ring is of the type known as a 'Stirrup' ring, named by Victorian collectors during the 19th century (due to the shape resembling horse's stirrups). Further research and study into this genre of ring, has concluded the 'stirrup' shape is likely a representation of Gothic arches, as found in the ornate windows of Cathedrals of the period. Such rings are often associated with the ecclesiastic community, found on sites belonging to the church such as Abbey's.
Today this ancient ring has survived the ages remarkably intact, a few light scuffs from its time in the ground, but perfectly wearable.
OBJECT: Stirrup ring
DATE: c. 12th - 13th century AD
MATERIAL: Gold & Sapphire
SIZE: 23.24mm x 18.96mm x 2.48mm
RING SIZE: 8 (US) Q (UK)
WEIGHT: 1.80 grams
PROVENANCE: Ex. private collection, Edinburgh. Ex. Private collection, Nottingham, originally found near Malton, Yorks.
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