PROBABLY SCOTTISH, POSSIBLY 7TH OR 8TH CENTURY, REMOUNTED CIRCA 17TH CENTURY
rock crystal, in a silver mount
6 by 3.5cm., 2⅜ by 1⅜in.
Overall the condition of the rock crystal is good with dirt and wear to the surface consistent with age. There are minor chips and abrasions along the central front ridge. Minor standard surface abrasions.
"In response to your inquiry, we are pleased to provide you with a general report of the condition of the property described above. Since we are not professional conservators or restorers, we urge you to consult with a restorer or conservator of your choice who will be better able to provide a detailed, professional report. Prospective buyers should inspect each lot to satisfy themselves as to condition and must understand that any statement made by Sotheby's is merely a subjective, qualified opinion. Prospective buyers should also refer to any Important Notices regarding this sale, which are printed in the Sale Catalogue.
NOTWITHSTANDING THIS REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF BUSINESS PRINTED IN THE SALE CATALOGUE."
Inventory, 1949, 'PENDANT, oval rock crystal, silver mounted' in the Strong Room
This intriguing rock crystal object may have been used as a 'charmstone'. It follows the same form as the famous Glenorchy Charmstone in the National Museums of Scotland, Edinburgh (H.NO 118). Like the Glenorchy Charmstone, it may once have adorned an early reliquary: a rock crystal of similar form adorns the famous St Fillan Coigreach (reliquary in the shape of a Crozier) in the National Museums of Scotland (13th century, inv. no. H.KC 2). The Glenorchy Charmstone is thought to date to the 7th or 8th centuries, and functioned as an amuletic talisman for the Campbells of Glenorchy in Argyll. It was believed to counteract witchcraft and to cure sickness, and was worn by Sir Colin Campbell in the 15th century when he fought the Turks at Rhodes. The Spetchley pendant may well be later in date but probably also came from a reliquary (given its shape). It is a tantalising theory that it too was once used as a charmstone in the distant past.