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Victorian Vulcanite Necklaces




Morning Glory
Collects…


things we love to buy, wear and
share

Victorian Vulcanite, Bog Oak & French Jet
Necklaces, Lockets, Watch chains, Crosses & Pendants

During part of the Victorian period from about 1860 to
1890, this jewelry was the height of fashion and black was a stylish color,
not just an ornament of mourning. Made of jet, vulcanite, bog oak or pressed
horn, each carried special meaning as a memento of a loved one. A brooch in
the shape of a hand carrying a bouquet conveyed a message symbolized by the
flowers. Photos might be housed inside lockets and watch fobs, and portraits painted on
pendants and earrings. While some black jewelry was meant to be worn
during mourning, black jewelry was fashionable as well and worn for its
beauty and sentiment.

VULCANITE (also sometimes called "ebonite") was made by combining and
heating sap of the Euphorbia or Ficus trees from Malaysia with sulphur.
Invented in 1843 by Thomas Hancock, pieces made of vulcanite were almost always molded, not carved,
and it was used mainly in making jewelry. (Gutta percha was almost never
used in jewelry and is often confused with vulcanite).
HORN is the natural horn of an animal, pressed into a mold to form jewelry.
It is sometimes translucent when held up to strong light.
BOG OAK is fossilized wood or peat found in Ireland. It is a
brownish-black, and has a woody texture.
FRENCH JET and CREPE STONE are black glass and not truly jet at all. Like
all glass, they will be colder to the touch and heavier than jet or
vulcanite.

BOIS DURCI was invented by Francois Charles Lepag in 1856. It is a
composition of fine hardwood sawdust and blood which is pressed then highly
polished.




VICTORIAN lady
wearing a vulcanite cameo
pendant and golden earrings. Cabinet card handwritten on the back in pencil,
"Lizzie Richardson".
View
View

VICTORIAN lady
wearing a
teardrop-shaped necklace and a carved ivory name brooch. Carte de viste
marked "Photographie Parisenne, Letalle & Co., (from Paris), 36 Cannon St.,
Birmingham".

VICTORIAN lady
wearing elaborate vulcanite drops necklace.
View




VICTORIAN vulcanite
grapes necklace, 20" long with 3-1/3" drop at the front.
View #V32599

VICTORIAN vulcanite
links necklace with four pendant maenads on each side of a center classic
maiden in three-quarter profile. The central maiden is a 2-1/2" cameo and
each maenad is 2", all on a 20" chain, circa 1880. This necklace is seen in
"Nineteenth Century Cameos" by Rowan, page 119, as well as in Muller’s book "Jet", page 126.
View
View
View
View
View #V29237

VICTORIAN vulcanite 20"
chain and 3" cross.
View

View
View #V31564





VICTORIAN vulcanite
"forget-me-not" embossed sentiment on a lovely locket and links chain.
The locket is 2-1/8" by 1-1/8", the chain 21" with
5/8" by 1/2" links, circa 1880.
View
View
View #V31976


VICTORIAN
vulcanite Bacchante cameo locket of a lovely lady with grapes and
leaves in her hair. Inside are fittings for one photo with cover. This was made circa
1870. It is 1-1/3" by 1-1/8" with a 5/16" loop and was often worn on
a black satin ribbon tied at the back of the neck. A Bacchante is a goddess of
the grapes, wine and good times.

View


View
#V37486

VICTORIAN vulcanite
Bacchante cameo locket necklace with a 22-1/2" chain with 5/8" by 1/2"
links and a 1-1/2"
by 1-1/8" locket. View
View
View #V31857




VICTORIAN vulcanite
fuchsia oval 1-7/8" locket on 28" chain, one link missing.
View
View #V27201

VICTORIAN
lady wearing a vulcanite hand brooch, beads and bracelet.
View

VICTORIAN vulcanite
chain with celluloid cameo pendant, chain is 19" with 5/8" by 1/2" links and
2-1/2". View
View #V31856




VICTORIAN
vulcanite beads necklace with inset abalone chips, 32" with
the beads graduating from 5/8" down to 1/4", with a barrel clasp.

View


View
#V38458


VICTORIAN
vulcanite expansion bracelet with inlaid abalone design, circa
1870. Relaxed size 6-1/2" and can stretch some, front element 1-3/4" by
1-1/2", back width 1". Each link has an impressed design of framed flowers
and leaves.

View


View


View


View


View


View
#V38457

ALL



FRENCH
paper mache box with abalone inlay, as is with chip repaired,
markings on the bottom, 2-3/4" tall and 3-1/8" wide. The is a paper label on
the bottom on which is hand written, "Henery Clay, visit to Paris 1934,
Frances Lourdes, French Papier Maches". If you look very closely, as it is
very hard to see, there is a repaired of about 3/4" where the lid was
cracked, and it is now very stable and well repaired.

View
#a38436





VICTORIAN
vulcanite and silver buckle bracelet marked "D&C Patent"
on the back, circa 1880, 6-5/8" relaxed size, 2" front width and 1-1/2"
back width. An almost identically designed piece can be seen in the book
"Victorian Jewelry" by Davidov and Dawes on page 129.

View


View
#V36900


VICTORIAN
black horn expansion bracelet with inlaid abalone design,
circa 1870. Relaxed size 6-5/8" and can stretch some, front element
1-5/8" by 1-1/8", back width 1".

View


View


View
#V38356

VICTORIAN vulcanite and
silver black buckle
bracelet, 6-5/8" relaxed by 2" front 1-1/2" back. An almost
identically designed piece can be seen in the book "Victorian Jewelry" by Davidov
and Dawes on page 129.
View #V34044








VICTORIAN vulcanite
locket with fuchsia flowers, 4 photo compartments holding photos of what
looks like parents and grandparents, 2-1/8". See
page 26 in Helen Muller’s "Jet Jewellery and Ornaments".
View #V25284


VICTORIAN
vulcanite 2" locket on 4-1/2" of chain.
View
View #V25357

VICTORIAN vulcanite
locket in ornate shield motif, 3-1/4".
View #V25285

FRENCH JET
& BLACK GLASS




VICTORIAN French jet (black
glass on japanned a metal backing) necklace, 16" with a 3-7/8" front drop. French jet is black glass
used in the late Victorian era to emulate Whitby jet. It is usually more
shiny and the pieces much more delicate than jet, and they are set onto a
black enameled backing.
View
View
View #V35884



FRENCH
jet necklace worn by Ava Gardner in a 1949 movie "The Great
Sinner" which was set in the late Victorian era.

VICTORIAN early 1800s
French jet necklace, 16-1/2" with a front drop of 4". To find this
ornate and well-designed a piece of early French jet in excellent condition
with no missing pieces is a rare treat, and this can go from Gothic to
glamour.
View
View
View
View #V31972




VICTORIAN
French jet bib necklace with amazing delicacy and intricate
design one of the best I have ever had. French jet is black glass, and
each tiny faceted piece here has been mounted to a black enamel metal backing and
joined together for this amazing necklace. The catch is a double hook at the back.
View #V36319

VICTORIAN French Jet (black
glass) necklace, 16" with a 3-7/8" front drop. French jet is black glass
used in the late Victorian era to emulate Whitby jet. It is usually more
reflective and the pieces much more delicate than jet.
View
View
View #V35884
A Victorian French jet necklace was worn by Kathryn Hepburn in a 1947 movie,
"Song of Love", shown in this photo.

VICTORIAN early French jet
necklace and pendant, 18" wearable length with a 2-5/8" Y and a 2" round
pendant. This look can go with everything from Gothic to glamorous! View
View
View
View
#V37289



VICTORIAN French jet
necklace circa 1880s, 15" wearable size and with a front drop of 4-5/8".
French jet is not jet at all, but a black glass, faceted and fitted onto a metal
backing to create a light weight wonder like this.
View
View
View
View
#V37168

VICTORIAN French jet necklace on a vintage mannequin bust.


VICTORIAN
French jet collar necklace, 16-1/2" by 1-1/2". "French
jet" is the name by which this faceted glass was called when attached to
a japanned metal backing, as in this necklace.

View


View
#V38459





VICTORIAN
black glass long faceted beads necklace, the longest
I have had so far at 84" total length with a hook closure. This was knotted
between each bead, a sign of quality, and it may have been used as a muff chain.
View
#V37989


VICTORIAN
large French jet brooch (very early), each side 3-1/8". Like
all French jet, this is fragile and easy to bend, so care must be taken when
pinning it on and wearing it.

View
#V38315

VICTORIAN jet black glass beads necklace with faceted bead spacers,
strung on the original black beading string, 58".

View
#V36374




VICTORIAN
black glass 54" long muff chain with very unusual "watermelon seed"
or "crepe stone" beads and seed bead spacers, hook on the end. These
beads were purposely made with a "bloomed" or matte finish in order to
comply with obligatory mourning dress of the era. See this on page 124 of
Helen Muller’s book "Jet".
View
View #V29215

VICTORIAN black glass and braided fabric Albert watch chain with tassels, 10".
View #V29637

VICTORIAN black glass beads muff or long chain, 56".
View #V29256




VICTORIAN black
glass beads and braided fabric watch chain, 9-1/2".
View #V29159
VICTORIAN black glass beads Albertina chain for a pocket watch, 12".
View #V28866
VICTORIAN black
glass faceted and round beads muff chain with hook end, 51".
View #V29446

MORE
VULCANITE




VICTORIAN
vulcanite green boy pendant, 2-5/8". See similar pieces on page
90 of Helen Muller’s book "Jet".
View #V28876

VICTORIAN vulcanite pendant
with hand painted porcelain pink "Tyrolean boy" portrait, 2-5/8".
View #V29161

VICTORIAN vulcanite boy
portrait miniature on porcelain pendant, circa 1870, 1-1/2". See page 32 in
Helen Muller’s "Jet Jewellery and Ornaments".
View #V27673




VICTORIAN vulcanite pendant with pansies hand painted on porcelain, circa 1870,
2-5/8". Pansies
are the symbol of remembrance.
View #V27373


VICTORIAN vulcanite links
bracelet with a mosaic padlock charm closure, circa 1880, 7-1/3" long with
1-1/2" padlock. The mosaic is a motif of pink, yellow and white roses, blue
forget-me-nots and green leaves.
View
View #V36379


VICTORIAN
vulcanite pendant with a hand painted portrait of a child on
porcelain, total length with loop is 3" by 1-5/8" wide.

View
#V38478





VICTORIAN bangle with flower
bouquet motif circa 1880s, 6-1/4" relaxed and will fit up to a 7" wrist,
1-5/8" wide at the front .
View
#V36377


VICTORIAN
vulcanite bracelet with applied cameo on the front and
decorated all around with carving and a beaded edge, 6-1/4" by 2-1/8" wide
at the front and 1" wide at the back. It’s unusual to find a vulcanite
bracelet with this size and amount of detail. This is a really special piece
circa 1880.

View


View
#V38943

VICTORIAN Queen Victoria vulcanite expansion bracelet
circa 1887, her 50th anniversary as Queen, 7" relaxed size,
front 1-3/4" by 1-1/2", back width 1-1/8". This piece can be seen in Helen
Muller’s "Jet Jewellery" on page 128.
This very special piece is from the personal collection of Katy and Helen
Muller, authors of the books on jet jewellery. I am so very privileged to
have it and other pieces from their private collections. It is guaranteed
to be genuine and all original
Victorian. Their books "Jet Jewellery &
Ornaments" and "Whitby Jet" are the best books written on the
subject. View
View
View #V36473






VICTORIAN vulcanite bird
and scrolls locket with charming baby photo inside, 1-3/4".
View #V27374

VICTORIAN vulcanite fan brooch from the 1880s, 2". Fans for the
Victorian were symbolic of flirtation and coyness. On the back is an English
registration mark which I think dates this to 1881, but it is very difficult
to read.

View
#V25283

VICTORIAN vulcanite
three-dimensional mother bird feeding nested babies locket, 1-3/4".
See page 26 in Helen Muller’s "Jet Jewellery and Ornaments".
View #V27375




VICTORIAN vulcanite heart and flowers pendant, 1-3/4".
View #V29817

VICTORIAN carte de visite of a lady wearing a jet brooch and earrings
and a vulcanite locket on chain, 2-1/2" by 4". "E. Le Jeune Photographe,
Naples". View
View #Vkph22

VICTORIAN vulcanite lily locket with fitting on one side inside,
1-5/8" by 1-1/3" with 1/2" loop.
View
View #V32216




VICTORIAN vulcanite
chain with highly embossed roses cross pendant, chain 30" with 1/2" round
links, cross 3-1/3". View
View #V31854

VICTORIAN vulcanite
china with four-lobed pierced and carved pendant with highly embossed floral
front, chain 19" with 1-1/4" by 7/8z" down to 3/4" by 1/2" links and 3"
pendant. View
View
View #V31855

VICTORIAN vulcanite
necklace 22-1/2" chain with 5/8" by 1/2" links and Bacchante locket 1-1/2"
by 1-1/8". View
View
View #V31857




VICTORIAN vulcanite chain and pendant with flower bouquet design, chain
16" with round 7/16" links, teardrop shaped pendant 1-5/8" by 1-1/8".
View
View #V29896

VICTORIAN lady wearing a
vulcanite necklace.

VICTORIAN vulcanite chain and pendant with flower bouquet design, chain
19", teardrop shaped pendant 2-1/8" by 1-5/8".
View
View
View #V29897




VICTORIAN Prince
Albert watch chain with charms, 11-1/2" chain with 1/2" to 1" charms on 3-1/2"
chains.
View #V28546

VICTORIAN lady wearing a vulcanite
chatelaine chain at her waist.

VICTORIAN vulcanite 17" chain
with hook closure
and 2-1/3" etched design pendant. View
View #V29141






VICTORIAN vulcanite oval
locket with entwined initials "AEI" (Amity, Eternity & Infinity) on the
front for eternal love and a tintype of a man inside, 1-5/8". See similar
pieces on page 90 of Helen Muller’s book "Jet" and in Luthi’s Sentimental Jewelry page 27.
View #V29233
VICTORIAN lady wearing an
intricate vulcanite necklace.
VICTORIAN vulcanite large
oval locket with flower bouquet front, intricate designed interior with
covered photo compartment, 2", page, see Muller Jet, page 128.
View #V29235




VICTORIAN vulcanite
brooch, a flying cherub holding a garland of flowers circa 1880, 2-1/3" by
1-1/2". This is a rare motif for vulcanite.
View #V36056


VICTORIAN chain necklace
circa 1880s, a nice wearable length at 20" long and links from 7/8" down to
1/2" wide, has the original hook closure. #V36378

VICTORIAN vulcanite oval
flower bouquet brooch circa 1880, 2-1/8" by 1-5/8".
View #V36052




VICTORIAN vulcanite watch chain with
oval double hole links, 20" long with links 1" by 3/4" down to 3/4" by 1/2",
easily wearable as a neckalce.
View #V31588

VICTORIAN carte de visite of a lady wearing a vulcanite locket on a
black ribbon, 2-1/2" by 4". "Henry Knight, Artist & photographer, Regina House,
Grand Parade, St. Leonard’s on Sea".
View
View #Vkph19

VICTORIAN vulcanite men’s watch chain,
also worn as a necklace, 17"
long with graduated links from 1-1/4" by 3/4" down to 3/4" by 1/2".
View #V31774




VICTORIAN vulcanite links
watch chain or necklace, 28" with each oval link being 7/8" by
3/4". View
#V31407

VICTORIAN lady wearing vulcanite
chain necklace and cross pendant, gold earrings and ring.
View

VICTORIAN vulcanite collar
necklace, 16-1/2" with black velvet ribbon to tie in a bow at the back for
fastening. See Flower’s "Victorian Jewellery" page 159. View
View #V26444

JET is the black
fossilized wood of a particular tree that grew millions of years ago. It is
particularly associated with the English town of Whitby where much of it was fashioned into
jewelry and accessories. While jet was made into jewelry throughout the
1800’s, it was especially fashionable between 1860 and 1890. Like amber, it
will pick up paper when static is created by rubbing it on wool or silk.

GUTTA PERCHA is the sap of the Dichopsis tree also found in Malaysia. Invented
by William Montgomerie in 1843, it was used mainly in technical articles
like driving belts, stoppers, tubs,
pails, cups, washing drums and cables. It was also used for household
purposes such as mouthpieces for whistles, sticks and riding whips. It was
very rarely used for jewelry.

Pieces like these, circa 1860-1890, can be seen in Helen Muller’s
book Jet and in Christie Romero’s Warman’s Jewelry,
Ed. 3
on pages 51 and 52.




VICTORIAN vulcanite
fuchsia oval 1-7/8" locket on 28" chain, one link missing.
View
View #V27201

VICTORIAN vulcanite 15"
chain with 18" ribbon and 2-5/8" deep relief teardrop shaped cameo pendant,
30". See page 126 of Helen Muller’s book "Jet" for a similar
design.
View #V27246

VICTORIAN vulcanite teardrop
shaped cameo pendant, 1-1/3".
V27238






VICTORIAN lady wearing
an elaborate cameo mourning piece.
View

VICTORIAN vulcanite
pendant on original chain, fastened with ribbon, 34" total. 4" pendant and
chain.
View #V27204

VICTORIAN lady
wearing a cameo vulcanite necklace.
View



VICTORIAN vulcanite 18" links
necklace with 2" grapes motif pendant.
View #V29236
VICTORIAN vulcanite lady
cameo large teardrop shaped pendant, 3".
View
View #V33565
VICTORIAN vulcanite teardrop
shaped grapes motif
pendant with beaded edge, 1-5/8".
View
#V29242






VICTORIAN vulcanite oval
smooth 1-5/8" locket on 19" chain, circa 1880. See Flower’s
"Victorian Jewellery" page 178.
View #V27239
VICTORIAN lady wearing a
vulcanite neck chain.
View
VICTORIAN vulcanite
plain smooth oval locket with intricate design inside, 1-3/4".
View #V29238




VICTORIAN
vulcanite lily-of-the-valley locket, photo cover on one side of inside,
1-7/8". View
#V28893

VICTORIAN lady wearing a
vulcanite neck chain and locket
View

VICTORIAN vulcanite pendant
with trumpet flowers and leaves, 2".
View #V26450




VICTORIAN lady with
fancy hat and vulcanite necklace.
View


VICTORIAN
vulcanite locket with 3-dimensinal forget-me-not flowers and
leaves, 2-1/2". View
View #V27799

VICTORIAN
lady wearing a mourning necklace, brooch and earrings.




VICTORIAN vulcanite
neck or watch chain with original clasp, 20" by 3/4". #V25876

VICTORIAN vulcanite thick graduated links
watch chain or necklace,
22-1/2". Each link is graduated from 5/8" by 1/2" at the smallest
up to 3/4" by 1" at the largest. View #V28209

VICTORIAN black
bead muff chain, 54".
View #V25993




VICTORIAN vulcanite long
Albert chain or necklace with hook end, 20". #V29156
VICTORIAN vulcanite collar
necklace, 14" by 1-1/3" with velvet ties on both sides, see Helen Mueller’s
Jet, page 84.
View
#V29157
VICTORIAN vulcanite oval
links Albert chain, 18".
View #V29160




VICTORIAN vulcanite
chain with flat oval graduated 3/4" by 1/2 smaller links and 7/8" by
1-1/4" larger links with hook closure, circa 1880, 20".
View #V29448

VICTORIAN vulcanite watch
chain, 13" with 4" decorative drop. #V27236

VICTORIAN vulcanite chain,
flat figure-8 graduated 5/8" by 7/8" smaller links and 7/8" by 1-1/4" larger links necklace with hook closure, circa 1880, 20".
View #V29449




VICTORIAN lady wearing
vulcanite necklace with cross pendant.

VICTORIAN vulcanite 24" necklace with carved 1-1/2" cross.
View #V28802

VICTORIAN lady wearing a vulcanite
pendant on a black ribbon.




VICTORIAN vulcanite
beads, long strand 68".
#V27695

VICTORIAN vulcanite 17"
necklace with 2-1/2" anchor pendant. The anchor is the symbol of hope.
View #V28557

VICTORIAN dyed
black wooden beads, knotted between each bead, silver hook closure, 52".
View #V28416




VICTORIAN vulcanite 15"
by 5/8" watch chain with 1-1/2" pendant.
View #V29471

VICTORIAN vulcanite necklace with unusually large square graduated links
chain, 20" with links from 1" by 7/8" down to 5/8" by 1/2".
View #V32217

VICTORIAN
vulcanite unusually patterned links Albert watch chain, 13".
View #V29162




VICTORIAN vulcanite
graduated links necklace, 21" with links 1-1/4" by 7/8" graduating down to
3/4" by 1/2". View #V31336

VICTORIAN vulcanite
chain, 20" long with links from 1/3" by 1/2" to 3/4" by 1".
View #V28556

VICTORIAN vulcanite long
watch chain with oval fob, 15".
View #V31333




VICTORIAN vulcanite
links chain with hook closure, circa 1880, 20" by 5/8".
View #V33986

VICTORIAN horn
links necklace with hook closure circa 1880, 22" by 5/8".
View #V61887

VICTORIAN horn
chain necklace with hook closure circa 1880, a nice length at 21" by 1/2".
#V61802


VICTORIAN vulcanite watch chain and book charm, chain 14" book 1" by 3/4". #V32621

There are several materials used to make mourning
jewelry, and they can be very difficult to distinguish between: jet, bog oak,
horn and vulcanite. Jet was hand carved, while the other materials were pressed or molded.

For information on identifying these and
other materials, see the booklet "What’s It
Made Of ?"
by Sherry Shatz.




VICTORIAN vulcanite
cross with leaves design pendant, 3-1/4".
View #V29296
VICTORIAN bog oak cross
carved with the name "Gladys", 2-2/3".
View #V29206
VICTORIAN little bog oak carved
cross pendant, 1-1/4". View #V29473





VICTORIAN
lady wearing parure of necklace, bracelet and earrings.
View
View

VICTORIAN vulcanite
cross pendant, 3-1/8".
View #V25356

VICTORIAN vulcanite
cross with leaves design pendant, 3-1/4".
View #V29296





VICTORIAN
vulcanite lily cross pendant, 3" by 1-7/8" by
3/4" thick.
View


View
#V32620


VICTORIAN
lady wearing matching jet cross pendant and earrings and a
black neck ribbon. Carte de viste size 2-1/2" by 4-1/4", marked on the back
"Ulke Bros., No 1111 Penn. Avenue, Washington, DC, 1872" and hand written in
ink "Julia, with love Judith".
One photo expert contacted me wondering if this CDV might have been a
gift to U.S. Grant’s wife, Julia, as the Ulke Brothers were well known
as photographers of the politically famous in Washington DC, and 1872
was the beginning of Grant’s 2nd term as President. I would love to know
who she is.

VICTORIAN vulcanite
cross pendant with design on the front, 2-1/8" by 1-1/3".
View #V31334




VICTORIAN large pressed horn cross, 4-1/2"
by 2-1/2". View #V28200

VICTORIAN
vulcanite cross on chain necklace, hook closure, 1-3/4" by 19".
View #V29962

VICTORIAN vulcanite long
chain, 34". View #V29470


VICTORIAN pressed
horn "IHS" (In Hoc Signo) cross pendant, 3-1/3" by 2".
View #V32825


For more information about JET and other Victorian
black jewelry we recommend the excellent book ‘Jet’ by Helen Muller
and "Whitby Jet" by Katy & Helen Muller.


"Jet" by Helen Muller

Helen Muller