Jewels are the meeting point of the sophisticated craftsmanship with precious materials in order to celebrate the holder or a relevant event.

Horace Coclite on the Sublicio Bridge (XVI century - XVI century) by anonimousBiennale Internazionale dell'Antiquariato di Firenze

Jewels in time

This section provides exquisite examples of how jewels are also artifacts that evolved in time, influenced by historical events and changing fashions.

In this jewels is depicted Horace Coclite fights the army of King Porsenna on a bridge with four arches.

Profile Louis XV (unknown - unknown) by Jeanne-Antoinette Poisson, Marquise of PompadourBiennale Internazionale dell'Antiquariato di Firenze

It is worth noticing the two-layer agate cameo with the profile of Louis XV bearing the signature of the famous Marquise of Pompadour, the most powerful French woman in the eighteenth century and official mistress of the beloved sovereign of France. In addition to its acknowledged political influence, the marquise of Pompadour has a very important role in the functions of patron of the Arts, a task that exercised thanks to the solid friendships that bounded her to famous artists. Among these, is worth mentioning the most famous stone engravers of the era, who was in the court of the King: Jacques Guay. It is indeed under the direction of Guay that the Marquise refined with particular success the art of carvings cameos: they often depicted the effigy of her royal lover, which she did not hesitate to wear in public, fiercely flaunted on the wrist with spectacular bracelets or rings on the fingers.

Writing set (Late 18th century) by anonimousBiennale Internazionale dell'Antiquariato di Firenze

This writing set was made in Naples in the late 18th century.

A worshipping scene (XVIII century - XVIII century) by Reinhold VastersBiennale Internazionale dell'Antiquariato di Firenze

The subject depicted in this worshipping scene is the same of a cameo in the British Museum that portrays figures praying to a pagan icon.

Detail of the enameled gold pendant.

Napoleon First Consul (Early 19th century - Early 19th century) by HarrisBiennale Internazionale dell'Antiquariato di Firenze

The bust of Napoleon first Consul of the Republic bears the signature of the English carver Harris. Coming from the imperial collection, according to the tradition handed down by the last owner, this ring was accidentally found hidden inside a lock of a door in the Palace of Tuileries in Paris and purchased by an enthusiast of antique bolts during an auction sale.

When Napoleon Bonaparte became a console for life in August 1802, after a plebiscite, his profile often appears on coins but also on a large number of objects commissioned to the greatest artists of the time.

Napoloeon triumphant on a chariot (unknown - unknown) by Luigi PichlerBiennale Internazionale dell'Antiquariato di Firenze

On a quadriga that proceeds from right to left, driven by soaring horses whose manes rise like flames in the air, Napoleon thrives, with deep solemnity and composure.

The emperor is accompanied by Victory, who leads the cart.

Louis XVI (Luigi Carlo di Borbone), Maria Atoniette and MariaTheresa Charlotte of France (unknown - unknown) by anonimousBiennale Internazionale dell'Antiquariato di Firenze

It is a very rare set made of gold, silver and precious stones.

A typical example of objects made by the goldsmiths of the French court and specially made by the sovereign to be given to members of rank close to the king.

The frame surmounted by a royal crown is conceived as a royal manifesto of the French aristocracy.

Credits: Story

I am gratefull to the staff of the Biennale Internazionale dell’Antiquariato and the Secretary Fabrizio Moretti for allowing this partnership to happen.
Thanks to the galleries that supported and joined this exhibition.
Special thanks to the kindness and patience of the staff of the Google Cultural Insitute and all the friends that have supported me in this project.
Luigi de Benedetto

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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