Lot 325
  • 325

Gold, Platinum-Topped Gold, Pink Tourmaline and Diamond Brooch, Designed by Paulding Farnham for Tiffany & Co.

40,000 - 60,000 USD
bidding is closed


  • gold, platinum, pink tourmaline, diamond
The openwork flowerhead centering a round pink tourmaline weighing approximately 1.70 carats, accented by 20 oval-shaped pink tourmalines weighing approximately 9.10 carats, further set with old European-cut diamonds weighing approximately 2.40 carats, gross weight approximately 15 dwts, signed Tiffany & Co., with scratch number 845; circa 1900; fitted with retractable pendant loop.

Catalogue Note

The name, Tiffany, conjures visions of diamonds, emeralds, rubies, sapphires, and pearls.  While that may be true today, one hundred and twenty-five years ago, the firm was offering a plethora of colored gemstones from mines in the United States sourced by the gemologist, George Frederick Kunz, who traveled extensively throughout the country in search of rare and unusual specimens.  One gemstone that fascinated him was the tourmaline that had been discovered in Maine in 1822.  A little over fifty years later, Kunz offered Charles Tiffany a brilliant green stone that was followed by superb pink examples. 

Tiffany’s was proud to offer the public rare and interesting gemstones.  The first showing of pink tourmalines occurred when the firm displayed a selection from Maine at the 1889 Exposition Universelle in Paris and, then, again at the 1900 Exposition in the same city.  Perhaps the two most important jewels with pink tourmalines Tiffany exhibited were a wild rose brooch set with sixty-two pink tourmalines in the 1900 Exposition and a life-sized pink tourmaline carnation brooch at the 1901 Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo.

The pink tourmalines Tiffany offered in their jewelry designs were from Maine.  These deposits tend to produce crystals in raspberry pink-red such as the gemstones in this brooch, one of largest pink tourmaline brooches from Tiffany’s extant.  The pink tourmalines are perfectly matched, most likely cut from the same rough stone.  The pink palette is complemented with diamonds that would have sparkled in gas lit rooms and is a superb example of the jewelry Tiffany offered their clientele at the turn of the twentieth century.

 - Janet Zapata, Specialist in Jewelry and American Silver