A rare pendant, this is an historic cameo in black hardstone sardonyx, set in 14k gold. The bust is that of Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon. M Leclerc was a French naturalist, mathematician, cosmologist and encyclopedist. His work influenced generations of naturalists. No single naturalist of the 18th century epitomizes the revolutionary changes that the Enlightenment brought to the study of nature more than Leclerc.
Historical cameos such as this were privately commissioned, and this magnificent portrait of Leclerc was most likely commissioned by his family after his death. The portrait itself was sensitively and gracefully carved. Hardstone cameos are routinely the most expensive to buy, as the hardstone is the most difficult of materials in which to carve a figure. Shell cameos are less difficult to carve, and the lava the easiest of all. This sardonyx cameo is in lovely condition, as is the gold that frames it. The piece measures 40mm x 25.4mm; 7.3 grams. Worthy of exhibition, it would look outstanding hanging on a black velvet cord or a gold chain. You may even want to frame it for permanent display. For the serious cameo collector. Free USA Shipping, Handling, Insurance