Magnificent Jewels

Magnificent Jewels

View full screen - View 1 of Lot 97. An Exquisite Colored Stone and Diamond Bracelet, France.

Exceptional Jewels from a Distinguished American Collection

An Exquisite Colored Stone and Diamond Bracelet, France

Auction Closed

June 7, 04:43 PM GMT


250,000 - 350,000 USD

Lot Details


Designed as a frieze, the central panel depicting the figure of Isis, flanked by panels depicting Horus falcons with a continuous pattern of papyrus reedsset throughout with old European and single-cut diamonds, calibré-cut buff-top rubies, sapphires, emeralds and black onyx, length 7 inches, signed France, numbered 6769, with French assay marks; circa 1925.

Previously sold in Sotheby's New York, Magnificent Jewels, April 18 and 19, 1988.

For a bracelet of nearly identical design, see Set in Style: The Jewelry of Van Cleef & Arpels, Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, page 150.

The allure of Ancient Egypt has long captivated civilizations across the ages, from the grandeur of pharaohs to the mystique of hieroglyphics. In the realm of jewelry, the fascination with Egypt's rich history and cultural legacy has inspired a distinctive style known as Egyptian revival. The genesis of Egyptian revival jewelry may be traced back to the 19th century, a period marked by a resurgence of interest in ancient civilizations. Significant archaeological discoveries, most notably the sensational unveiling of King Tutankhamen’s tomb in 1922, further fueled this obsession, leading to a proliferation of Egyptian-inspired art, architecture and fashion. Central to Egyptian revival jewelry is the incorporation of iconic motifs and symbols like scarabs, sphinxes, pharaohs, scribes, and gods in animal forms. These were often accented by hieroglyphics with undecipherable narratives and embellished with diamonds, rubies, sapphires, emeralds and onyx. Jean-Marcel Humbert, curator at the Musée du Louvre during the 1994 exhibition Egyptomania, observed that “Egyptomania is more than a simple mania for Egypt. It is not enough to copy Egyptian forms, artists must ‘recreate’ them in the cauldron of their own sensibility and times.” From Art Deco masterpieces such as the bracelet offered here as lot 97 to 21st century interpretations, echoes of Egyptian revivalism may be found in both the archival collections of esteemed jewelry houses and the repertoire of independent contemporary designers, a testament to the movement’s enduring legacy and collectability.