Wednesday, 1 July 2009

Romantic symbols

Romanticism was a social shift away from the aristocratic, social, and political ideas of the Enlightenment period, and instead stressed the importance of dreams, emotions and sentimentality as the inspiration for writers, artists and composers. The early Victorian period is referred to as the Romantic period and was marked by Queen Victoria’s marriage to Prince Albert in 1840. During this time lockets became popular and they could contain photographs as well as hair from a loved one. Even Queen Victoria herself gave gifts of jewellery made from her hair. Human hair was also woven into elaborate designs and patterns used on pins, brooches, and bracelets. The lockets themselves were usually worn underneath clothing to protect the special token inside and to prevent any gossip surfacing. The romantic ideal of the locket are exemplified in these:

Locket with hair from Sheila Cameron

Locket with photo from Marie Antiques

Selection of lockets from Marie Antiques

In 1848, Queen Victoria and Prince Albert bought Balmoral Castle in the Caledonian woodlands of Scotland and Celtic motifs began to influence English arts and crafts. By the end of the Romantic period, "Scottish pebble jewellery" had become very popular, these were brooches and pendants containing polished agate gemstones. Alfies has some lovely examples:

from Gareth Brooks

Stunning colours from Marie Antiques

The Romantic period in painting emphasised lush landscapes and the sentimentality it could harbour. These traits are finely expressed in these paintings from Peran Dachinger's Fine Art:

Romantic landscape

Greek temple

And on the continent, plump cherubs adorned items as a romantic ideal, such as these gorgeous Dresden comports and mirrors from Gloria Sinclair.

Cherubs and flowers

Adorable cherubs

Be a romantic and find a gift at Alfies!


Laurel said...

OH my Gosh- how I was I was in London over San Francisco today :)

Alfies Antique Market said...

Thanks! if your ever in London then you will have to pay Alfies a visit!

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