Antique Edwardian Crystal Opal & Red Spinel Dinner Ring - Whoa!!
As beautiful a ring as can be. Jaw-dropping, bulged-eyes, mouth-open Gorgeous!!
I'll try and keep this brief. It is Edwardian Period, 1901 - 1910. Could be Victorian, but the style is more Edwardian. It is beautiful crafted from and literally screams fine quality.
The centerpiece of this ring is a stunning natural Crystal Opal. That means that the Opal is translucent to transparent. While there are any factors that influence the value of an Opal, Colors, Play of Fire, Pattern, Directionality, and Cut are key. And this Opal has the best of the best of these qualities! Beautifully translucent, yellows, green, reds, and blues predominate and are well balanced. It faces well from all directions - it doesn't have to be placed at a particular angle to see its fire, and the color saturation is incredible. The Opal measures approximately 10mm x 8mm for an approximate weight of 1.25 Carats.
Surrounding the Opal are natural Red Spinel. Here we need to clarify. It is often difficult to positively ascertain gemstone type while in the setting. Such was the case here. Our experience tells us that these are actually Rubies instead of Spinel, but our tests were equally divided in results, with half leaning toward Spinel, and half leaning toward Ruby. We settled on calling it Red Spinel for evaluation and pricing, although in our heart-of-hearts we believe them to be Rubies, which would be consistent with the stone of choice for this ring in the Edwardian Period. And an interesting historical side-note, Spinel is the great impostor of gemstone history: many famous rubies in crown jewels around the world are actually Spinels. The most famous is the Black Prince's Ruby, a magnificent 170-carat Red Spinel that now adorns the Imperial State Crown of England in the British Crown Jewels - it was for many, many decades, however, believed to be Ruby. Also, the Timur Ruby, a 361-carat Red Spinel now owned by Queen Elizabeth, has the names of some of the Mughal Emperors who previously owned it engraved on its face: an undeniable pedigree, but it, too was believe to be Ruby! The lesson here is, Ruby or Spinel - it is a beautiful stone to accent this gorgeous Opal.
The setting of this ring is 10K yellow gold. Beautifully etched on each shoulder. This ring is a size 6.5 (6 1/2) and has a weight of 4.21 grams.