Authenticating Georgian ring
(Birmingham al )
I found a ring I'm interested in at an antique jewelry dealer. I have not gone to look at it in person yet. I emailed the shop and got a response from a GIA graduate gemologist. It has no stamps or hallmarks. They tested it and it is 14k gold. They said the only history they can give me is that it is late Georgian (I asked where they purchased it). The stones are garnet and seed pearls. It was regularly priced $1,185, on sale for $895, and the lowest they will go is $795. What can I do to tell if it is really late Georgian? The price seems way too good to be true from what I've read.
Hallmarking of jewelry was uncommon during the Georgian era, but occasionally encountered. It looks like from the ring setting it might be from Georgian era, the most typical style of stone setting during the Georgian era was the crimped collet setting which was often cut down between the crimping to create prong-like protrusions; these are referred to as cut-down collets. Georgian collets were made from very thin sheet metal that was burnished tight to the stone to keep out air and moisture which would cause foils to tarnish on closed-back pieces. Mildred Stephens
of Bashford Jewelry
Additional Comments by Suzanne Gardner
The ring looks absolutely stunning, and all of its qualities suggest that it is a Georgian ring. Of course there is no way to tell for sure unless the ring comes with a certificate of authentication or is analyzed by an independent antique jeweler.
The low price of the ring could be due to a variety of factors, particularly the condition of the ring. Does the center stone have any blemishes or inclusions that could cause it to fracture and chip easily with wear? Are the settings for the pearls secure? What condition is the back of the ring? Is the ring in a condition so that it can be safely worn without worrying about causing deterioration or damage to the ring?
These are all questions that need to be answered before the ring is purchased. As with all ring purchases, this ring should come with at least a 30-day return guarantee so that you can have the ring analyzed further - particularly the condition of the ring.
I do hope that this info is helpful, and if you decide to purchase the ring send an update on the ring's condition!