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Antique Salt Water Pearl 14ktGF Gems of Roman Royalty Earrings

CAD 39.72 Buy It Now 12d, CAD 19.85 Shipping, 30-Day Returns

Seller: ancientgifts (4,186) 99.3%, Location: Lummi Island, Washington, Ships to: Worldwide, Item: 381745483898 TRANSLATE Arabic Chinese French German Greek Indonesian Italian Hindi Japanese Korean Swedish Portuguese Russian Spanish Your browser does not support JavaScript. To view this page, enable JavaScript if it is disabled or upgrade your browser. Click here to see 1,000 archaeology/ancient history books and 2,000 ancient artifacts, antique gemstones, antique jewelry! Four Genuine White Salt-Water Pearls on 14kt Gold Fill French Hooks. Each averages about 1 1/2 carat, and between 6 and 7 millimeters in diameter. DETAIL: According to Pliny (the first century Roman Philosopher, Historian, and Scientist) all of Rome and the entire Roman Mediterranean were “pearl crazy”. According to Pliny the craze started when a portrait of Pompey the Great was rendered in pearls to mark the occasion of his third triumph (celebratory parade). The third wife of the Roman Emperor Caligula reportedly owned pearl jewelry with a value of 40 million sesterces ($25 million in today’s dollars). In fact it was rumored in Rome itself that Caesar invaded Britain on account of the fresh water pearls that were found there. And in 46 B.C., when Caesar returned from Egypt to Rome where he was joined by Cleopatra and their infant son, he dedicated a cuirass made completely of British pearls in the Temple of Venus Genetrix. Here's a pair of very beautiful pearl earrings. Very large, very beautiful, but slightly blemished cultured pearls. They’d been sitting in a warehouse in Hyderabad, India for decades – perhaps since the early 1950’s. Though they are slightly blemished, it is not something one would notice at a casual glance. To casual scrutiny they look like a $200 pair of earrings – and to many, the character and uniqueness of such pearls offsets their “not quite perfect” quality. We mounted the pearls onto high quality – not cheap gold plated – 14kt gold fill french hooks. This is first-quality jewelry designed to last years and years, not cheap costume jewelry. If you prefer, we could remount them onto sterling silver french hooks. The pearls possess a highly polished, reflective, lustrous, creamy white surface with iridescent highlights. They average between six and seven millimeters in diameter, and each pearl weighs (on average) about one and one-half carat – the total gemstone weight of the two earrings being over nine carats. Those caveats in mind, these are very nice gemstones. If they were perfect, each pearl would wholesale for $25 or more. And yes, these images are of the actual earrings offered. HISTORY: The pearl is likely the first gemstone known to prehistoric man. Ancient Mediterranean cultures believed pearls were formed when an angel's tears fell into the open oyster shell. In ancient times the Red Sea was an important source of pearls to the various ancient Mediterranean civilizations. In the ancient gemstone markets of Babylon, 4,000 years ago, pearls were prized possessions believed to restore youth. Written accounts of pearl jewelry exist both in third millennium B.C. Indian and Chinese texts. Through ancient Rome and into medieval Europe, pearls always decorated crowns and robes of kings and queens. A pair of pearl earrings owned by Cleopatra were estimated by the ancient Roman Historian Pliny to have a value of about 60 million sesterces (equivalent to 10,000 pounds of gold, $40 million in today’s value). Who can forget the tale of Cleopatra dissolving one of these two pearls in the presence of Marc Antony, so she could “taste” the essenceof pearl. In fact, all of Rome and the entire Roman Mediterranean were “pearl crazy”. According to Pliny the craze started when a portrait of Pompey the Great was rendered in pearls to mark the occasion of his third triumph (celebratory parade). The women of Rome preferred to wear two or three pearls dangling from their ears, so they would rattle as they moved, attracting attention to the fact that they were wearing pearls. The third wife of the Roman Emperor Caligula reportedly owned pearl jewelry with a value of 40 million sesterces ($25 million in today’s dollars). In fact it was rumored in Rome itself that Caesar invaded Britain on account of the fresh water pearls that were found there, and that "in comparing their size he sometimes weighed them with his own hand". And in 46 B.C., when Caesar returned from Egypt to Rome where he was joined by Cleopatra and their infant son, he dedicated a cuirass made completely of British pearls in the Temple of Venus Genetrix. A fragment of the oldest known pearl jewelry, found in the sarcophagus of a Persian princess who died in 520 BC, is displayed in the Louvre in Paris. During the Renaissance, the European appetite for pearls became so great that laws forbade anyone other than royalty or the very privileged classes from even wearing pearls. Pearls were the exclusive domain of the crown! The appetite for pearls was enormous, and the natural salt water pearl beds of Central and South America were ravaged. Unknown today to most, America exported to Victorian Europe large numbers of very high quality freshwater pearls from the Ohio, Mississippi, and Tennessee River basins. So many gems were exported to Europe that the New World quickly gained the appellation "Land of Pearls." Pearls are found in a wide variety of colors and shades, the most highly valued being white, black, rose, and cream. Black pearls are very rare and highly prized, and are found only in Tahiti. Also especially prized are rose-colored pearls found in India, Sri Lanka (Ceylon), and the South Pacific. Except for the freshwater production of small specimens, genuine solid pearls are by and large only obtainable as antiques. From the 1930’s to present day, cultured pearls from Japan have predominated the marketplace. Most people generally credit the “invention” of cultured pearls with Kokichi Mikimoto in Japan at the turn of the twentieth century. However eight hundred years ago in China, monks planted carvings of Buddhist deities into river mollusks in order to be coated with pearl-like layers, the first recorded cultured “pearls”. Since the 1990’s, with the decline of Japanese cultured pearl production due to pollution and disease, China has increasingly been the dominant supplier of cultured pearls, both freshwater and saltwater. However it is still generally believed that the finest cultured pearls ever produced, with the exception of limited quantities produced in Tahiti, were produced in Japan between 1930 and 1970. If you’d like to learn more about the history of pearls, there’s a great article here. Domestic shipping (insured first class mail) is included in the price shown. Domestic shipping also includes USPS Delivery Confirmation (you might be able to update the status of your shipment on-line at the USPS Web Site). Canadian shipments are an extra $14.99 for Insured Air Mail; International shipments are an extra $18.99 for Air Mail (and generally are NOT tracked; trackable shipments are EXTRA). ADDITIONAL PURCHASES do receive a VERY LARGE discount, typically about $5 per item so as to reward you for the economies of combined shipping/insurance costs. Your purchase will ordinarily be shipped within 48 hours of payment. We package as well as anyone in the business, with lots of protective padding and containers. We do NOT recommend uninsured shipments, and expressly disclaim any responsibility for the loss of an uninsured shipment. Unfortunately the contents of parcels are easily “lost” or misdelivered by postal employees – even in the USA. If you intend to pay via PayPal, please be aware that PayPal Protection Policies REQUIRE insured, trackable shipments, which is INCLUDED in our price. International tracking is at additional cost. We do offer U.S. Postal Service Priority Mail, Registered Mail, and Express Mail for both international and domestic shipments, as well United Parcel Service (UPS) and Federal Express (Fed-Ex). Please ask for a rate quotation. We will accept whatever payment method you are most comfortable with. If upon receipt of the item you are disappointed for any reason whatever, I offer a no questions asked return policy. Send it back, I will give you a complete refund of the purchase price (less our original shipping costs). We travel to Russia each year seeking antique gemstones and jewelry from one of the globe’s most prolific gemstone producing and cutting centers, the area between Chelyabinsk and Yekaterinburg, Russia. From all corners of Siberia, as well as from India, Ceylon, Burma and Siam, gemstones have for centuries gone to Yekaterinburg where they have been cut and incorporated into the fabulous jewelry for which the Czars and the royal families of Europe were famous for. My wife grew up and received a university education in the Southern Urals of Russia, just a few hours away from the mountains of Siberia, where alexandrite, diamond, emerald, sapphire, chrysoberyl, topaz, demantoid garnet, and many other rare and precious gemstones are produced. Though perhaps difficult to find in the USA, antique gemstones are commonly unmounted from old, broken settings – the gold reused – the gemstones recut and reset. Before these gorgeous antique gemstones are recut, we try to acquire the best of them in their original, antique, hand-finished state – most of them centuries old. We believe that the work created by these long-gone master artisans is worth protecting and preserving rather than destroying this heritage of antique gemstones by recutting the original work out of existence. That by preserving their work, in a sense, we are preserving their lives and the legacy they left for modern times. Far better to appreciate their craft than to destroy it with modern cutting. Not everyone agrees – fully 95% or more of the antique gemstones which come into these marketplaces are recut, and the heritage of the past lost. But if you agree with us that the past is worth protecting, and that past lives and the produce of those lives still matters today, consider buying an antique, hand cut, natural gemstone rather than one of the mass-produced machine cut (often synthetic or “lab produced”) gemstones which dominate the market today. Our interest in the fabulous history of Russian gemstones and the fabulous jewelry of the Czar’s led to further education and contacts in India, Ceylon, and Siam, other ancient centers of gemstone production and finishing. We have a number of “helpers” (family members, friends, and colleagues) in Russia and in India who act as eyes and ears for us year-round, and in reciprocity we donate a portion of our revenues to support educational institutions in Russia and India. Occasionally while in Russia, India, Siam, and Ceylon we will also find such good buys on unique contemporary gemstones and jewelry that we will purchase a few pieces to offer to our customers here in America. These are always offered clearly labeled as contemporary, and not antiques – just to avoid confusion. We can set most any antique gemstone you purchase from us in your choice of styles and metals ranging from rings to pendants to earrings and bracelets; in sterling silver, 14kt solid gold, and 14kt gold fill. When you purchase from us, you can count on quick shipping and careful, secure packaging. We would be happy to provide you with a certificate/guarantee of authenticity for any item you purchase from me. There is a $2 fee for mailing under separate cover. Please see our "ADDITIONAL TERMS OF SALE."

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