The table cut was one of the first diamond cuts to evolve from the point cut (which is not really a cut at all since it just makes use of the diamond crystal's beautiful octahedral shape). Diamond cutters were relatively quick to realize that cutting the stones in specific ways gave them greater sparkle and brilliance. The table cut is simply one point removed from the upper pyramid point of the crystal, and a flat culet cut from the lower. This lovely Georgian band features eight table cut diamonds in rub over settings. Diamonds of this period were almost always set in silver, making this piece somewhat unusual for its exclusive use of yellow gold. The mounting is articulated with striations along the north and south sides and subtly engraved arced lines at the shoulders. Georgian gemstone rings normally have closed settings with foiled backs. At some point in time the settings on this ring were opened, this alteration makes it easier to wear than your typical Georgian ring as it does not need to be protected from moisture. Still, at over two hundred years of age, it should be worn with care.
GEORGIAN (1714 - 1837)
The Georgian Era was named for the English Kings George I, II, III and IV. Within the powerful nations of France and England, fine gemstone jewelry was worn only by the extremely wealthy, and the styles were regal and ornate. As imperialist war raged in the Americas, Caribbean, Australia, and beyond, the jewelry industry benefited: colored gems from all over the empire became newly available.
A mix of artistic influences from around Europe contributed to the feminine, glittering jewels of the era. Dense, ornate Baroque motifs from Italy showed up in Georgian jewelry, as did French Rococo’s undulating flora and fauna. Neoclassical style made use of Greek and Roman motifs, which were newly popular due to the recently uncovered ruins of Pompeii and Herculaneum.
Lapidary methods improved: the dome-shaped rose cut was popular, as was the “old mine cut”, a very early iteration of today’s round brilliant cut. The boat-shaped marquise diamond cut was developed around this time, supposedly to imitate the smile of Louis XV’s mistress, the marquise de Pompadour. Paste—an imitation gemstone made from leaded glass—was newly developed in the 18th century, and set into jewelry with the same creativity and care as its more precious counterparts.
Real and imitation gems were almost always set in closed-backed settings, lined on the underside with thin sheets of foil to enhance the color of the stone and highlight it's sparkle. This makes Georgian rings tough for modern women to wear, especially on an everyday basis: genteel, jewelry-owning ladies of the 18th century were not famous for working with their hands like we are. Nor did they wash their hands as much as we do. Water will virtually ruin a foiled setting, so take special care with your Georgian ring. Very little jewelry from this period is still in circulation, and it's very difficult to repair.