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VICTORIAN JEWELLERYjewellery: when Eugénie wore the FrenchCrown Jewels, Queen Victoria retaliatedwith the Koh-i-noor diamond. Throughthe great world fairs, we have chartedthe rise and fall of the different countries,as well as the fortunes of famousjewellers - Garrard's, Boucheron,Castellani and Tiffany. The cameo was perhaps the mostpopular Victorian jewel, if the numbersthat turn up in NADFAS study days areanything to go by. But cameos carriedconnotations of education and culture,as did jewels in the archaeological style.The influence of archaeologicaldiscoveries and the collecting ofcameos are all part of the story, alongwith the passion for souvenirs of travel,whether Britons in Britain, Britons andcontinental Europeans abroad, orAmericans in Europe. If this all sounds on the serious side, itmay come as a surprise to learn that theVictorians had a tremendous sense ofhumour. What better dinner party jokethan a cravat-pin with a death's headthat gnashed its teeth and rolled its eyesat the touch of a hidden battery? A newangle on the Victorian love of noveltydemonstrates how jewellery reflectsachievements of science, fascinationwith nature, the impact of topical eventsor popular entertainment. Jewellery formen, a much neglected subject, has asection of its own. Studying the registered designs forpopular jewellery in the National Archivewe were amazed to discover how quicklyjewellers reacted to reports in the press -often within days. When Britain invadedthe Zulu kingdom in South Africa inJanuary 1879, Zulu shields and weaponswere brought back to London. Jewellersimmediately recreated them as brooches,miniature trophies of British victory. Butwe could never have made thesecorrelations without online newspaperarchives, one of the most remarkableadvances of the digital age. SearchingThe Timesonline confirmed time andagain our conviction that jewellery playeda central role in the cultural life of theperiod, but it also made this a differentkind of book - one that we could nothave written 10 years ago. Jewellery in the Age of Victoria: AMirror to the World by Charlotte Gereand Judy Rudoe. British MuseumPress, April 2010, £50 (a special offeris available for members, see page 56)NADFAS BOOKSIGNINGJudy Rudoe willbe introducingthe book at aspecial NADFASevent at theBritish Museumon 21 June2010. For furtherdetails see page REVIEW / SPRING 2010 43Left: Pendantwith cobras inthe Egyptiantaste by RobertPhillips, London,c1863Images: © British Museum

www..llass--hiiguerrass..cco..uk44NADFAS REVIEW/ SPRING 2010