14 Karat Gold, Diamond and Enamel Locket with Byzantine Woman, Circa 1880
This locket depicts a Byzantine woman with enamel face and headdress set with nine diamonds.
John Ruskin, England's preeminent Victorian art critic, patron, watercolorist and philosopher, ignited a renewed interest in Byzantine art and architecture through his work, Stones of Venice. In it, Ruskin's exuberant and often sensual description of San Marco seduced the British public into viewing the building "as lovely a dream as ever filled human imagination." William Morris shared Ruskin's passion for Byzantine design and stated, "Its characteristics are simplicity of structure and outline of mass; amazing delicacy of ornament combine with abhorrence of vagueness: it is bright and clear in colour, pure in line, hating barrenness as much as vagueness; redundant, but not florid, the very opposite of Roman in spirit, though it took so many of its forms and revivified them. Nothing more beautiful than its best works have ever been produced by man." For further information Byzantine Revival, see The Byzantine Revival by Dr. Jacqueline Banerjee.
The chain is gilt metal.
1 9/16" diameter.