Highly desirable, paste jewelry has been popular since the 18th century. Women back then were happy to interchange real diamonds with quality pastes. Marie Antoinette owned an exquisite, extensive paste collection. Because paste is a lead glass, it doesn't have the longevity of a diamond. Today, real paste jewelry is hard to come by. The early black dot pastes are especially difficult to find.
This is a very pretty little pin, late Georgian / early Victorian. Made of silver that is not marked, but tests as a lower grade silver than .900. It maybe European .800 or slightly less. The pastes that decorate the face of the pin are high quality and lovely. The pin has a loop for a chain. This would not have been a neckchain, but a safety chain with a tiny "safety" pin at the end. Safety chains counteracted the openness of c-clasp design of the pin catch.
In good condition. The large sapphire paste has beautiful color and faceting. The small clear pastes are well faceted black dot diamond pastes. All are original and secure in their settings. Today, the black dots are not immediately visible in each paste. Time has taken its toll. Generally speaking, the glitter the pastes in this pin had at birth has dulled to a glimmer over the centuries. Two of the pastes have yellowed slightly, one hardly noticeable, the other moreso under a good light. The pin would certainly benefit from a gentle cleaning.
This is a good opportunity for the student of early jewelry to own and study (and wear) an early paste piece. The pin is 1 1/4"L X just over 1/2" high. It is the essence of femininity. Free USA Shipping, Handling, Insurance