Jet is a black fossilized wood (other theories believe it to be a form of coal or sap similar to amber) found in may countries including France, Spain, the United States, Turkey, China, Germany, India, Poland and Russia. It was formed when wood would fall into stagnant water and then fossilize, similar to the way that coal was made. There are generally two recognized types: soft and hard jet. It is believed that the soft jet was formed in fresh water and the hard in salt water. When her beloved Albert died, Queen Victoria bought and wore masses of jet. As a result, the jet trade received much publicity and entered a boom period moving far beyond simple mourning.
A fantastic and unusual hand-carved jet necklace from the Victorian (ca1880) era! This handmade piece is comprised of large graduated interlocking links that dangle 11 spheres to create an eye-catching festoon style necklace. The hand-carved orbs graduate in size towards the center and sway freely from a darkened silver jump ring with wonderful movement, each one reflecting the light beautifully with every turn. The carved jet design rests at the front of the neckline, and finishing the piece is a rich black velvet ribbon securely attached to each end, which ties to any desirable length at the back. When worn, the adjustable necklace length provides wonderful variety to rest dramatically at the neckline, or hang long and elegantly well below. Despite its substantial size and appearance, jet is lightweight and comfortable to wear. A marvelous antique piece, it has a strong Victorian look that would be right at home in any jet collection!
Measurements: The jet design measures approximately 16" long and hangs approximately 1 1/2" long at the center where the largest ball rests. The largest ball measures about 5/8" in diameter. The necklace has the ability to adjust to approximately 33.5" long, leaving some room to tie a secure bow at the back.
Condition: The overall condition of the necklace is excellent. Given the age of the piece, the jet remains in remarkable condition with only very minor scratches and chips to some surfaces, however given the dark color, they are not noticeable when worn. The dangling spheres are secure and intact. The velvet ribbon is in good condition, securely attached to the jet links, and is in good working order.