Late Victorian Sterling + Onyx Figural Horse Head Fob
A fob is an adornment or a seal that hangs from the ribbon or chain of a pocket watch. Its purpose is to decorate or add weight to the watch chain itself making it easier for the watch to be withdrawn from a pocket. A spinner or swivel fob has two or more plaques that can be turned or swiveled within a moveable bracket. This allows the wearer a choice as to which face is displayed prominently! The fob would have been used to seal the wax of a letter or note.
A fantastic horse head fob from the Victorian (ca1901) era! Crafted in sterling silver, this English made piece forms the shape of a lovely three-dimensional horse head, dangling from a short extension chain and swivel watch clasp. The horse displays a highly detailed design, including a flowing mane, pointed raised ears, etched hair, and realistic facial features. Resting at the base of the neck is a smoothly polished, bezel set onyx seal, which exhibits a wonderful rich black hue. Attached to the back of the horse's neck is a bail that connects to a short interlocking chain extension, ending in a swivel watch clasp. The location of the bail allows the piece to uniquely hang at an angle, and is perfect for dangling from a favorite necklace or watch chain. Stamped along on the bottom edge are several English hallmarks, including a lion (also found on the chain and clasp) indicating its silver purity, beside an anchor, indicating it was assayed in the city of Birmingham, a date letter "b", indicating it was made in 1901, and the maker's mark "JP." A very striking equestrian inspired piece, this fob would be perfect for the Victorian horse collector!
Measurements: The fob, chain, and clasp hang approximately 3 1/8" long (including the bail). The horse fob measures approximately 1" long (on an angle), about 5/8" wide, and about 3/8" thick.
Condition: The overall condition of the fob is excellent. Besides normal surface wear, there is no apparent damage to the sterling silver setting. The onyx stone is intact and securely set. The chain and clasp are secure and in good working condition. There is a natural darkened patina to the some of the silver, which is normal given its age, and adds to its unique beauty.