Victorian Sterling & Niello Checkerboard Buckle Bracelet
Niello is the art of ornamenting metal surfaces that is thought to have originated with the Egyptians and spread throughout Europe in the Middle Ages. It is enamel-like substance made alloys of sulfur, copper, silver and lead and used as an inlay on engraved metal.
This fantastic Victorian (ca1880) bracelet is an excellent example of the Niello art form! The bracelet has a hinged bangle design with a 3-dimensional buckle motif that graces the front surface. A fine checkerboard Niello pattern is inlaid into the outer surface of the piece. Raised details depict the buckle and strap, which are also enameled with striped Niello accents. The bracelet opens at a hinged push clasp at the side, where a safety chain provides extra security. This stylish bangle would look fabulous stacked with other bracelets, or worn on its own. A wonderful Victorian Niello piece, it makes a perfect everyday accessory and would compliment any collection!
Measurements: The inside of the bracelet (where a wrist would rest) measures 2 1/8" wide and 1 3/4" tall. The surface of the bracelet is approximately 1/4" wide.
Condition: There is some visible wear to the Niello pattern on the back of the bracelet, however it is not noticeable when worn, and there is no fading to the checkerboard pattern on the front of the piece. The bracelet clasp fastens securely, and the safety chain is intact. The numbers "705" are lightly etched on the interior of the bangle. There is a natural patina on the surface of the sterling that gives it an antiqued appearance, which is normal but could be polished for a brighter look if desired.