The Heneage Jewel; The Armada Jewel

Nicholas Hilliardca. 1595 (made) - 1599

The Victoria and Albert Museum

The Victoria and Albert Museum

The Heneage or Armada Jewel, English, about 1595

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  • Title: The Heneage Jewel; The Armada Jewel
  • Date Created: ca. 1595 (made) - 1599
  • Location Created: England
  • Type: Locket
  • Rights: Given by the Rt. Hon. Viscount Wakefield CBE, through The Art Fund
  • External Link: http://collections.vam.ac.uk/item/O33883
  • painter: Hilliard, Nicholas
  • Subjects Depicted: Elizabeth I (Queen of England and Wales); Ark; Tudor rose
  • More Information: This locket encloses a miniature of Elizabeth I (1558-1603). According to tradition, the jewel was given by the queen to Sir Thomas Heneage. He was a Privy Counsellor and Vice-Chamberlain of the Royal Household. The jewel remained in the possession of the Heneage family until 1902. It has sometimes been called the Armada Jewel. However, it was probably made in about 1595, some years after the defeat of the Spanish Armada in 1588. The reverse shows a ship holding steady on a stormy sea. It symbolises the Protestant church steered by Elizabeth through religious turmoil.
  • Materials and Techniques: Enamelled gold, table-cut diamonds, Burmese rubies, rock crystal and a miniature
  • Dimensions: Height: 7 cm, Width: 5.1 cm