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from the archive
GeorgianRed Paste Rivièrewith Cross Pendant

The rivière - one of the most popular and enduring styles of necklace to come out of the Georgian period - features an endless line of matched or subtly graduated gems set within inconspicuous collets. The necklaces supposedly take their name from the French Riviera: it is said that the lights along the coastline resembled a dazzling necklace when viewed from the sea. This c. 1800 rivière fis composed of deep red paste stones in crimped collets with closed and foiled backs with a stylized pendant cross. The necklace is fashioned from gilt pinchbeck and measures 15" (the chain at the back was added at some point to extend the length).


  • Materials

    Gilt pinchbeck, red paste, 9k chain.

  • Age

    c. 1800

  • Condition

    Very good - chain was added at some point to extend the length of the necklace; the clasp was broken and we have had the tongue groove repaired as well as made a repairs to the loops of the setting which holds the cross.

  • Stone

    15" length, 1 3/4" cross.





RelatedHistory Lesson

Pinchbeck& Gold Alternatives

The best “costume jewelry” during the Georgian era was pinchbeck, a top-secret formula that looked — and wore — just like gold.