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from the archive
Victorian Pique Snake Bracelet

Popularized during the Victorian era, pique was a technique of decorating tortoiseshell with inlays of gold and silver. By applying heat to small gold and silver shapes, jewelers could essentially iron the metal into the tortoiseshell. Pique jewelry is relatively rare for two reasons: first, because it is an organic material and didn't always stand the test of time; second, because the Victorians stopped using real tortoiseshell in favor of the faux variety, made from early plastic. This spectacular pique snake bracelet has lost its inlay in a few places but is in otherwise excellent antique condition.


  • Materials

    tortoiseshell, gold inlay

  • Age

    c. 1870

  • Condition

    Very good - gold inlay is missing in places; some rubbing and a small chip on the interior of the shank

  • Size

    6 1/2" inner circumference, 2 1/4" x 1 1/2" head, 3/8" shank

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please note:Terms of Sale

Antiques can be returned unworn and in original condition within 10 days of delivery for an exchange or refund minus the cost of shipping. Once a piece has been altered, including ring re-sizing, it is FINAL SALE.

RelatedHistory Lesson

Snakes:Fertility, Power, Wisdom, Renewal and Healing.

Serpents were the bodyguards of the ancient world.