Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Cheapside Hoard: Goldsmiths, Bankers, Jewellers, Pawnbrokers and Toymen …



Our knowledge of gems of the Tudor, Elizabethan and Jacobean eras is from the portraits painted reflecting the wealth of the individual … together with documentary sources … but little actual jewellery.

Some of the many gemstones


The power dresser of the time was Elizabeth I (1533 – 1603) … who had scattered her glad-rags with the jewels of the day and ensured symbols also appeared in the portraits informing courtiers and populace alike that she was the Queen of England and its realms.




Pearls were the jewels of the 1500s, while the herbalists pounded and smashed all manner of ‘delights’ including pearls – whose white powder became much like aspirin today.  Holly of I AM HR Sinclair has a Writer’sGuide to Crystals and Gemstones.


Elizabeth 1 painted after the defeat
of the Spanish Armada in 1588


Elizabeth 1 had black diamonds on her dresses (they were painted black) and were called ‘black fire’ … the Hugenots in 17th C Antwerp finally found the magic in diamonds … by cutting one diamond with another.






Elizabeth used other status symbols – her hand resting on a globe: ruling the known world; her black dress was a symbol of constancy, the ermine included for purity, while gold showed wealth …


As a side note – apparently the jewellery used in the costumes for Wolf Hall is spot on for that Tudor period.  I haven’t watched the series yet, as it started too soon after the operation for me to concentrate.

Cheapside 1909

Cheapside, where the Hoard was found, is a common English street name, meaning “market place”, and has spawned the words chapman and chapbook … seemingly derived from the word for itinerant salesmen, who would sell such books: chapman.  Chapman comes in turn from Old English cēap (barter, business, dealing).

As Charles Dickens, Jr. wrote in his 1879 book Dickens’s Dictionary of London (c/oWikipedia):  Cheapside remains now what it was five centuries ago, the greatest thoroughfare in the City of London.


(1538) Edward V1's Procession - along Cheapside

At its west end near St Paul’s Cathedral, the Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths still plies its trade: Originating in the 12th century, it received its Royal Charter in 1327.




The range of a goldsmith’s trade was somewhat wider than might be imagined covering: goldsmiths with bankers and jewellers; bankers with goldsmiths and pawnbrokers; jewellers with goldsmiths and toymen.

The new buildings erected after the Great Fire of 1666, altered and added to, were so higgledy-piggledy and ramshackle that the Goldsmiths in 1910 decided to raze some of them.


An unusual clause was inserted into the agreement, and provision was made for any antique treasure that might be uncovered … be the property of the lessors: the Goldsmiths.


The Cheapside cache

Demolition began – the workmen discovered a tangled heap of jewellery, gems and other precious objects … they had uncovered what we know today as the Cheapside Hoard: the stock-in-trade of a seventeenth jeweller.



The workmen unaware of any judicial arrangements … did what they did with any trinkets/coinage etc they uncovered … took their find to “Stony Jack” Lawrence (1862-1939): a pawnbroker, dealer, collector of antiquities and sometime employee of both the Guildhall and London museums … announcing “We’ve struck a toy shop, I thinks guvnor!”

A gold pin with a blister pearl
in the form of a ship with fine
gold wire mast and rigging

Workmanship reflected in the variety of stones, enamelling and settings … all serve to underline London’s position at the crossroads of international gem and jewellery trade in one of the most dynamic periods of English history: stones found included …









  • Emeralds from Colombia
  • Bohemian and Hungarian opal, garnet and amethyst
  • Topaz and Amazonite from Brazil
  • Indian diamonds
  • Burmese rubies
  • Sri Lankan pink sapphires
  • Afghan lapis lazuli
  • Persian turquoise
  • Pearls from Bahrain
  • Peridot from the Red Sea
  • Cameos
  • Gold, amethysts, cabochon azurite-malachite gem ... while relatively few pearls survived after being buried for approximately 350 years.
  • Some fake gemstones made of carved and dyed quartz …


Enamelled chains
This tangled magical treasure trove … was eventually unravelled – most of the Hoard going to the new London Museum (under the auspices of the Goldsmiths), while the two established institutions the British Museum received some pieces, with the Victoria and Albert being donated a few …

We know the history – who ruled, what was going on, while research into the stash of jewellery and artefacts revealed probably the time frame.

Ferlite watch on left, and the
incredible Emerald-cased watch

A highly sophisticated watch by Gaultier Ferlite – bears the maker’s mark … and was almost certainly made in Geneva between 1610 and 1620.  Ferlite’s parents had lived in London.



Viscount Stafford's
seal
A tiny red cornelian seal can be attributed to William Howard, 1st Viscount Stafford, who as a catholic had fled abroad … suggesting that the Hoard was buried in the cellar after 1640/41 at the start of the English Civil Wars …

… when the turbulent times of the 16th and 17th centuries had taken their toll on the populace of London: the Civil Wars and plague had taken the men, who traded and worked here … the treasure trove lay forgotten … and was subsequently subsumed by the Great Fire of 1666.


 
Gold Enamelled brooch set with
diamonds and amethysts
This is the story of the Cheapside Hoard … which has led researchers to uncover unknown facts, for us to be able to see a large collection of Elizabethan and Jacobean jewellery in its finest settings and for the first time … and they unravelled the Cheapside Hoard’s imbroglio.



Exquisite scent bottle: Enamelled gold, opals,
opaline chalcedony, diamonds, rubies,
pink sapphires and spinels
The Jewellery Editor has a short video just over 3 mins, a write up and some other photos of the display jewels.


Museum of London Prints.com - will show you any number of postcards and prints



The Cheapside Hoard: London's Lost Jewels by Hazel Forsyth - this book has amazing information about the hoard, that period of history, the jewels and their origins, the method of making the jewellery, Cheapside, trade and the world relative to the hoard.  A worthwhile purchase and read.

Article for The Goldsmiths' Company by Dr David Mitchell

Hilary Melton-Butcher
Positive Letters Inspirational Stories


76 comments:

Sue McPeak said...

Excellent post Hilary with treasured photos and historical information. Enjoyed this so much, and will check out links. I made an interesting connection to my family history, too. The Bohemian and Hungarian opal, garnet and amethyst are quite significant to my Mother's Family History.
Sue at CollectInTexas Gal

Optimistic Existentialist said...

I LOVE that painting of Edward V1's Procession. Amazing...

Jo said...

The whole thing is quite fascinating Hilary, thanks. I was particularly interested in the origins of the word Cheapside. What a wonderful hoard to uncover. I had never realised that so much had been destroyed during the intervening years and that we had little or no jewellery from the earlier period. Lucky that the paintings survived.

Out on the prairie said...

What a great find. I always liked the display of wealth using gems in early years, but wondered if they kept track of all of them.

Karen Walker said...

Wow, how long it must take you to research your posts, Hilary. I loved seeing the crown jewels when I was in London. This is really fascinating.

L.G. Smith said...

WOW. That's what I love about England. Seems you can dig up any patch of ground and uncover historical treasures from Vikings bones to Roman coins to hidden jewels. :)

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

This is so interesting. Everything is so ornate. I would love to visit the area today and the museums to see the pieces.

Karen Lange said...

Wow, what a treasure indeed! I'd not previously heard of this discovery. What an interesting find, and what rich history within. Had to smile at your term "power dresser" for Elizabeth. That she was. Have a good rest of the week!

Ann Best said...

Such amazing treasures...black diamonds even. Cheapside...what a fascinating name for a place. The entire post is a treasure, Hils. LOVE it....and you. ((( ))) many from me and Jen

Chrys Fey said...

I always thought Elizabeth 1 was fascinating. I love to study her dresses. I draw fashion designs and get ideas from the things she wore. :)

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Sue - I'm glad I've given sufficient information .. some of which rings true for your family ... the Bohemian and Hungarian gems: that's good to know.

@ Keith - I thought it was Elizabeth's procession along Cheapside, but noted it was Edward V1 (her half brother) ... they say it gives us a good view of the streets of London - despite all the show ornamentation. I'm glad you appreciate it ...

@ Jo - it was a fascinating discovery and I loved seeing the exhibition. Also I found the information on the name of Cheapside fascinating - glad you did too.

The Civil War did much to destroy, or hide and then lose, etc our heritage from Henry VIII and Elizabeth I's time ... and yes isn't it lucky the paintings survived.

@ OOTP - sadly they haven't been able to keep track of many of the gems - obviously some we have in the great houses, cathedrals, palaces etc .. but this stock-in-trade is such a great asset to our understanding of jewellery and artisanship of that era.

@ Karen - the post was going to be very long - I've been trying to shorten it .. and also add snippets in that I find interesting ... and seemingly others do too ...

The Crown jewels are incredible aren't they - I was more interested in the safe door to the room!!! Hugely secure ...

@ Luanne - yes they're digging through London at the moment - tunnelling for a new railway line and new sewers ... and they are finding lots of skeletons - which will tell us so much information about the people living at that time: I will write about it!

@ Susan - the exhibition was extraordinary and we were so lucky to be able to view all these items. The items as you say .. are so so pretty and delicate ...

@ Karen - I'm glad I eventually got round to posting ... and that I took a while to decide what to include etc ...

Power dresser - Elizabeth I - definitely was!

@ Ann - thanks so much ... the painted black diamonds bemused me .. but they didn't know how to cut them - so paint them over!

Glad you too enjoyed the info re Cheapside ... history offers us much ...

Cheers everyone - thanks for coming by .. Hilary

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Chrys .. you slipped in to the comments before I realised.

How fabulous that you can get ideas for design from Elizabeth I's clothes ... I hope you'll look at some of the links for the jewels ... they'll offer you some other ideas too ..

Cheers Hilary

A Lady's Life said...

This was an interesting post Hilary.
I had no idea pearls made aspirin.
hmm

Eddie Bluelights said...

Fascinating story ~ I had no idea about this . . .
I love that period of history and the Stewarts later. King John of course lost his jewels in The Wash . . . :)

Eddie Bluelights said...

Silly me . . . getting my kings mixed up. John was much earlier . . . back to school, Eddie . . lol

loverofwords said...

I actually have some Burmese rubies in a pin from my Estonian grandmother. Jewels are fascinating, true portable wealth, that can be hidden and used when desperate. There is such a tradition of giving good jewelry as gifts in Europe and the UK, not so much in the US. Great blog as usual, Hilary.

Gattina said...

Painting diamonds in black is a real shame ! But of course if you have enough that's not a problem I love semi precious stones, especially turquoises. But I also love pearls.
In Antwerp there is a whole district full of jewelries ! It's interesting to see. (Less interesting to buy :))

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

Fascinating stuff! Your post is as much of a treasure as the treasures you've written about.

I hope your hip is healing nicely.

TexWisGirl said...

some pieces are fine and others just a way to show wealth and power. eek! :)

Lisa said...

I had no idea! What a find that must have been at the time, and even now. I wonder what bits are still out there that someone was smart enough to hold onto before the Goldsmiths realized what they had... I love the photo of the gold enameled brooch with the diamonds and amethysts. I would wear that!

Lisa said...

Also want to look up Wolf Hall! Sounds like a good series to watch!

walk2write said...

You always have the most brilliant jewels (posts) to show us, Ms. Hilary. Fascinating stuff indeed! Sorry to hear that you needed surgery but glad that you are on the mend. Don't know if you've ever heard of the Feldenkrais Method of rehab, but it might be worth looking into. I'll probably be doing a post about it soon since I took a massage CE class in Sarasota when we were travelling in Florida.

Southpaw HR Sinclair said...

What a stash! I love the watches. Can you image finding that? Wow.

It's still so weird to me that they used to grind up gems (and mummies).

M Pax said...

That emerald watch is fantastic. And i love the scent bottle.

Holly is a great resource on gems and minerals.

LD Masterson said...

I love these mini history lessons. You're research is wonderful.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

That's an amazing amount of jewelry they found!

bazza said...

This post is a real tour de force with dozens of interesting facts casually dropped in to give an amazing spectrum of insights and tangential directions of interest to follow up! I would have to take a day off to follow up all of the interesting links....!
CLICK HERE for Bazza’s fabulous Blog ‘To Discover Ice’

Christine Rains said...

What an amazing find! I love that little ship pin and scent bottle. So beautiful.

Janie Junebug said...

I love jewels. The information about the symbolism in the portrait of Elizabeth I is so interesting.

Love,
Janie

Brian Miller said...

what an intriguing story behind the jewelry and an interesting journey it took to get where it was...

have not watched wolf hall yet either, but i think it just started here in the states, so will catch it on the dvr.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ A Lady’s Life – the panacea of the day … I’m glad I take aspirin today and not ground pearls!

@ Eddie – it is an interesting period of history … especially when told through a story like this … Charles I and Charles II with Oliver Cromwell – another part of English history that made us what we are today ..

I knew what you meant by King John and was going to comment accordingly – but your brain kicked in … that story too would be an interesting one to tell ... but we need to find the jewels – do you swim?

@ Nat – those Burmese rubies must be beautiful to look at and such a precious memento from your Estonian grandmother – trade routes via Estonia must have reached far and wide. Jewellery is true portable wealth – now probably not so much. You’re right about jewellery gifts from the craftsmen that Europe and the UK have been fortunate to have. And we have the history of the craftsmen through the centuries …

@ Gattina – well they didn’t know any better in the 1500s – but it’s an interesting fact. Turquoises and pearls – good choice. I’d love to visit Antwerp and their jewellery district … yes my money box wouldn’t run to purchasing!

@ Susan – thanks I had more to say … but sort of managed a suitable length .. a fascinating period – while the treasure trove is incredible and we’re lucky to be able to see it. My hip is have a small hiccup – which I hope settles: such is life …

@ Theresa – well that was how it was 300 – 500 years ago … some had the wealth, and some (those early middle classes) were able to buy some trinkets … but they were beautiful.

@ Lisa – I was very lucky to be able to get to the exhibition ... quite extraordinary … with so many pieces available to be seen. I expect a few went ‘missing’ – but it looks like the bulk was saved – perhaps because they were caked in mud and so no-one was sure exactly what the ‘swag’ contained. One would hope the ‘lost’ jewels are loved .. and not hidden away once again. Isn’t that brooch amazing … and I agree I’d wear it too …

Wolf Hall has had good reviews here – I’ll get to watch it – I gather it’s just starting in the US

@ W2W – many thanks … so pleased you enjoy the posts. I have heard of the Feldenkrais Method and have considered it before I knew I needed a new hip … but I’ll be interested to read your post.

@ Holly – it was a real stash wasn’t it. Sadly the workmen didn’t really realise what they’d got their hands on – fortunately Stony Jack was around and respected amongst the workmen and he wanted to preserve any finds.

I know the way we found which foods to eat, which were good for us, which had healthy properties and those early precursors of pills and potions – a really ‘interesting’ concept – thank goodness is all I can say.

@ Mary – yes I had to put the watches up, and the scent bottle … so beautiful. I agree Holly has a wealth of information on her blog site.

@ LD – thanks so much .. they are mini history lessons aren’t they – and I’m glad you enjoy the snippets I post up …

@ Alex – it was a huge amount piled up and hidden away.

@ Bazza – yes I did get off the beaten track and added some extras in – it just was a great find, with an incredible story to tell … while the links do make interesting follow-up reading …

@ Christine – oh I’m glad I posted the picture of the ship pin and the scent bottle .. all the jewellery was incredible – the workmanship … stunning.

@ Janie – I know a handful of jewels wouldn’t go amiss … and the Armada portrait of Queen Elizabeth is fascinating … art has lots of stories too .. in the era when people couldn’t read or write …

@ Brian – the Hoard hasn’t travelled far … yet the tale it has told has led us to many places around the world .. the wonders of researchers.

Wolf Hall will catch on … enjoy it.

Cheers everyone – so pleased you enjoyed the journey of the Cheapside Hoard … and thanks for your comments - Hilary

Patsy said...

I'd heard of the black diamonds, but always assumed that was aname for jet or something else - not that real diamonds were painted.

Theresa Milstein said...

Such gorgeous gems.

Painted black diamonds? As they say today, that's just cray cray.

And that's some "Cheapside" loot!

Nilanjana Bose said...

Hi Hilary,

I am a great fan of Henry, know him slightly better than his daughter :) Won't get to see Wolf Hall, so will have to be content with the book(s).

I was under the impression that diamonds were not prized as they are now, pearls and coloured gems were much more sought after. (Pearls before swine, prized beyond rubies and all that) At least that's what it was probably like in the Mughal (sort of Indian counterparts of the Tudors) Empire - more into sapphires and emeralds and rubies than colourless stones. So interesting to know about black diamonds, imagine painting them, the amount of labour that went into each outfit! Mind blowing.

What is also amazing is how the settings and cuts changed with time and how technology allowed the introduction of increasingly complex designs.

As always, a fascinating post! And timely too - just planning a trip to the pearling museum in Bahrain :)

Best always.

mail4rosey said...

What a great display, and I love the ship pin. I've never seen a blister pearl. And how interesting that the pearl was once used like we use aspirin! Seems a pity to grind them. :)

cleemckenzie said...

I can't imagine what those workers must have felt like when they stumbled on that cache of jewels. I know I would have been breathless confronted with such beautiful art work.

Paula Kaye said...

Very interesting post. I am in love with pearls. I don't wear jewelry any more but own a beautiful stand of pearls!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Patsy - I hadn't heard the term before .. so was fascinated to hear about it.

@ Theresa - I know, but if you didn't know how to bring out the colours of the facets ... the Elizabethans were stuck and so painted them! Thankfully the Huguenots resolved that conundrum for us ...

Isn't it Cheapside loot - must have been amazing to find ..

@ Nila - I'm sure Wolf Hall will reach you one day ... and Henry is an amazing character ... but I think Elizabeth was probably a better royal - she was more pragmatic.

Diamonds weren't prized ... so you're right - I guess they used them as there was that occasional sparkle as they couldn't cut them.

Pearls and coloured gems .. were usually cabochons (polished) or table cut - pearls were used as found .. or as here as a blister pearl ...

I hope you'll tell us about the Pearling Museum in Bahrain .. I've just read about that and mentally noted ...

I'm sure the Mughals were similar to the Tudors - rulers ... and anything of value was valued ...?!

Isn't it interesting how so much as changed over time ... and I've got more I can write about re jewellery developments in the 21st century ..

@ Rosey - the exhibition was amazing and what joy to have the Hoard brought to life for us today - and not perhaps just be part of a museum collection without the storyline attached to it.

So many ideas came out of this post and the story line - I found a pearl in an oyster in South Africa and kept it safe - til my husband picked the box up during a move and of course it went awol - he was not the most sensitive or sensible!

@ Lee - I think the curators, historians and jewellers today are much more fascinated by the jewels and story line - we've learnt so much in 100 years and then have the technology to find out so much ... I was breathless just seeing the exhibition .. it was stunning.

@ Paula - how lovely that you have your strand of pearls .. apparently they need to be worn - they need the benefit of life next to them ... perhaps you could at times wear them?

Cheers everyone .. so pleased you've enjoyed seeing more about the Hoard etc ... love the interaction .. Hilary

Inger said...

What an interesting story, Hilary. Made me miss old London Town for sure. Thank you so much for caring, for your kind comments, for your concern. It means the world to me.

Vagabonde said...

What a discovery. I enjoyed your post very much. I grew up with jewels as my father was a jeweler-diamond dealer – a craftsman. He crafted his own designs and worked up his designs on a little table with many stones on it (his workshop was upstairs.) Now I enjoy looking at antique jewelry and would love to look at those you mention.

Michelle Wallace said...

Pearls made aspirin... did I read that correctly?
That Cheapside cache looks anything BUT 'cheap'. LOL
I like the little gold pin with blister pearl... really cute.
Black diamonds? Don't think I've heard of them...
Interesting!

Empty Nest Insider said...

What a beautiful collection! The emerald watch is my favorite! Years ago, I bought a gold enhancer in the shape of a flower. The salesperson pointed out that it was originally a tiny perfume bottle, and they just added a bale to attach to a chain. It's nothing like the dazzling one pictured, but now I know where the idea originated. Thanks Hilary!

Julie

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Inger - I always think of you when I write about London ... and I'm just glad that our comments and concern are easing you along this challenging journey - with many thoughts.

@ Vagabonde - how fabulous to have had that experience with your father and the precious jewels that he was able to craft: must have been incredible.

Lovely that his workshop was in the house and you could see him working his designs - no wonder you enjoy looking at antique jewellery - and yes, I'm sure you'd have loved to have seen the exhibition in its entirety.

@ Michelle - yes you did .. in the early days no-one knew what would help (or hinder) an ailment .. so pearls were used as a panacea: strange but true!

Cheapside - the naming is interesting isn't it -and it's not cheap now being near the centre of the City of London, and in the Goldsmiths and jewellery quarters.

I thought the blister pearl pin was exquisite ... while painting diamonds surprised me .. I'd never heard of that before either.

@ Julie - isn't the emerald watch extraordinary ... so exquisitely made. How interesting to hear about your choice of flower shaped gold enhancer ... back to the days when they needed to disperse the odours around them. But as you say now you can see where the concept came from all those years ago.

Thanks so much .. lovely to have your comments - cheers Hilary

Mark Koopmans said...

Not being a connoisseur (and you know spellcheck helped me on that word!) of any jewelry, I found this, nevertheless a very interesting read, so thanks for the brightly lit history lesson :)

Cherie Reich said...

A fascinating post! Elizabeth I was definitely a power dresser. It's a shame so much of the jewelry seems lost, though. Loved the pictures too! That Emerald-cased watch is gorgeous, as is the brooch with diamonds and amethysts.

Rosalind Adam said...

I'd never heard of this hoard before. How fascinating. Imagine coming across a hoard like that! I also didn't realise the meaning of the word Cheapside. Hope you're continuing to improve. You sounded a bit unsure on my blog comments.

Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

Elizabeth's dress is gorgeous, although I often wondered if she were desperately uncomfortable! I loved learning more about the jewels on the dress and the symbolism in the portrait.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Mark - good luck with that move and yes I might need spell check for connoisseur too ... glad you found the post interesting together with the history ...

@ Cherie - so glad you enjoyed it - Elizabeth I really was a power dresser wasn't she ... they melted the gold and silver and hid so much jewellery, as it was 'popery' ... I loved all the jewellery and am just grateful everyone can see the amazing pieces - the watches, and the brooch ...

@ Ros - I was so pleased I was around to visit this Exhibition - it was extraordinary as too how it was found ... lovely story. I just thought the Cheapside info was relevant in a few ways .. the books etc ...

My hip has had a brief blip - well I hope it's a blip .. we'll see .. I'm positive!

@ Elizabeth - yes 'your' dress is amazing isn't it - her costume would have been so heavy - she could probably hardly move and yes, uncomfortable too ... glad you enjoyed the little bit of history re the jewels and symbolism

Cheers and am so glad you enjoyed the story line .. Hilary

Lynn said...

That is an amazing story about the Cheapside jewelry hoard!

Suzanne Furness said...

Wow, loved this post. You know I am a fan of gems. Hope you are still progressing well, Hilary.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Lynn - it is an incredible story isn't it ..

@ Suzanne - thanks ... I think we all love gems and stunning workmanship ...

Life is life along the coast ... have good weekends everyone - cheers Hilary

beste barki said...

What a great post Hilary. I never tire of learning about gem stones and jewels.

Annalisa Crawford said...

They painted the diamonds black? Surely that wouldn't look as good as their natural state.

Friko said...

I want some of those jewels.

But if I can’t deck myself in them looking at them is the next best thing; reading about them here kindles an interest I didn’t know I had.

Juliet Batten said...

I never knew that gems could be so interesting - but then again Hilary, you have a way of making any subject interesting. I've had a blog rest, so it's nice to visit again.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Beste - it was fun to write, to learn about the area, the history and then the story of uncovering the jewels ..

@ Annalisa - they painted the diamonds black, because they didn't know how to cut them - that came about in the 1700s - to give them their shining facets.

@ Friko - I know they'd be amazing to touch and see wouldn't they ... and I was fascinated by how much I learnt about the Hoard and that period.

@ Juliet - welcome back to visiting ... and I'm so glad you enjoyed this gem visit

Cheers everyone and Happy Mother's Day to all who celebrate this Christian Mothering Day - 4th Sunday in Lent. Thanks for visiting - Hilary

Val Poore said...

Fascinating, Hilary! What history each of these pieces hold! I do hope your hip is improving now. I didn't know you'd had an op! It must be quite an adjustment for you. Take it easy and don't overdo things - you are always running from here to there, so now you must behave like the tortoise and not the hare :)

Julia Hones said...

Hi Hilary.
Thank you for the link about social inequalities.
I've had a safe trip and now I'm waiting to hear the new feedback from the editors.
I hope your hip is recovering nicely.
Cheers,

Julia

Joylene Nowell Butler said...

Hilary, your posts are better than any PBS show we get over here in N/A. Thank you for teaching me to appreciate all things. Fascinating photos.

Sherry Ellis said...

I hadn't really thought about the symbolism regarding Queen Elizabeth's clothing, jewelry, and her hand on the globe. Very interesting!

Susan Scheid said...

A gem of a post! And I do hope you are well on your way to recovery by now!

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Such a variety of treasure found. That's wonderful it all went to the museum.

Pearson Report said...

What an adventure you've taken me on. Thanks.
I would like those enamelled chains, please. :)

It's like a history lesson coming here - I always come away feeling I've learned something.

Cheers, Jenny xxoo

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Val - thanks .. the hip needed doing - soon it will all be over .. it does seem to be back on the mend again. tortoise .. I've been a little like that! Though the hare wants to get out!

@ Julia - thanks re the links in the comments I left. Welcome back ... and good luck with the feedback - I'm sure all will be well.

@ Joylene - I learn too .. and just like putting the extra snippets in ..

@ Sherry - I too hadn't really thought about the symbolism in the early art ... especially portraits.

@ Susan - thanks re the gem comment!

@ Diane - yes we're lucky we could see it all and also have it all researched for us

@ Jenny - I know I'll share the chains with you .. they looked so so pretty. Glad you've enjoyed and learnt some things .. makes writing the posts interesting.

Cheers to you all - and thanks for your visits .. Hilary

Denise Covey said...

Hi Hilary. Such a lot of hidden and not-so-hidden treasures. Love that name Cheapside which was anything but. I often gaze in wonder at the jewels that bedecked such as King Henry V111. Can't argue with that history!

Denise :-)

Rosie Amber said...

This goes great with a book on the Tudors I've just read.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Denise - it's an amazing story that has taught me loads about so many things .. and I loved the learning about Cheapside .. and yes Henry VIII was a power dresser too .. and I wouldn't want to argue with our history then!

@ Rosie - glad this post brings some extra light to your book on the Tudors - fascinating period of history ...

Cheers to you both - Hilary

Sarah E. Albom said...

Why would they paint the diamonds?? Why not just take a lesser gem and paint it and claim it's a diamond? So much cheaper and no one will be able to tell the difference (because they PAINTED it. Sorry that's really getting to me :D).

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Sarah - I know it does seem extraordinary doesn't it .. but they didn't know how to cut diamonds at that stage - it wasn't until the next century that the 'trick' was found - to use another diamond to find the facets ...

However obviously by the name black-fire the craftsmen in the 1500s realised there was something special - but couldn't find how to do it.

Hope this helps .. I also put it in the post ... but obviously not clearly enough for you .. cheers Hilary

janice h said...

What a lot of work you put into these, Hilary! I'm so glad you have such a big readership, folk who appreciate you and all the research and editing you do. What a huge body of work you've curated over the years! This is fascinating stuff, though I don't get why they'd paint diamonds black! I'd actually wear that wee gold and pearl boat pin.

You are SO going to enjoy Wolf Hall!! I'm not a history buff like my husband, so I hadn't read the books, but I thoroughly enjoyed the series.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Janice - if people didn't come and comment and I didn't feel blogging friends around I'd not be posting .. thankfully I just seem to have slotted into posting posts we all enjoy - I'm happy writing and everyone seems to enjoy coming by.

Isn't the boat pin amazing and yes I'd wrestle for that ...

the painting black of the diamonds .. I'm having so much trouble with them! - they (the goldsmiths etc) didn't know how to cut them and bring the facets out - hence they chose to paint them ... obviously there were chinks - hence the name "black fire" ... it was only in the next century that the Huguenots found out ...

Yes I know I'll enjoy Wolf Hall - and I do have the books here ... a treat in store ..

Cheers and so good to see you around the blogosphere again .. Hilary

DMS said...

Now this was a fascinating post! I have always been interested in history and sparkly things- but hadn't really thought of gems through the ages in quite this way. I learned a lot. Thanks so much!
~Jess

Diana Wilder said...

I am sticking my head in to see how you are doing (after coming up for air - myself, I mean). I had heard of the Cheapside Horde over the years, but not what was specifically found within it. Some of the pieces are very familiar to me. I want that emerald watch...

You know, looking at the photos of Labradorite earlier in the post, I find myself remembering a bibelot by a jeweler found in a book titled, I think, THE MASTER JEWELERS. It was a block of labradoriet carved to resemble a silk pillow. I seem to recall that it had a golden bow around it. Now I must go look it up...

Diana Wilder said...

Correction to prior comment:
It is a Monday morning. I meant HOARD, not 'horde'. (Hiding my face in shame...)

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Jess - so glad you enjoyed the post and that you learnt a lot .. it's nice to hear ...

@ Diana - I'm doing my usual trawl around life that catches my - as these jewels did .. as you and that Emerald Watch - amazing isn't it!

The Labradorite is in the next post on scarves ...but that snippet you've just dropped about the block of it being carved into a silk pillow -is incredible ... I hope you find it!

No worries re the Horde v Hoard .. there were hordes of people at the museum!

Cheers to you both - Hilary