Cameos are commonly carved from shell and rarely in harder materials as it takes a true master carver to get the detail when carving into harder material and here is an exquisite pair of antique sardonyx and enamel cameo earrings dating from the 1860's.
Sardonyx is a naturally layered material from the quartz family that is layered with white and a soft pink background that when carved allows the carver to show these colours to their best light. And the quality of carving for each of these earrings is nothing short of spectacular. The detail in each is captivating from their faces to the detail in the hair and there is no doubt that this was carved by a master carver.
Then the design of the earrings is so lovely with the 18ct gold setting and highlighted with white enamel and blue enamel. The colours of the enamel really accentuate these earrings so well, and from the bottom to the top of the shepherd hooks, this distance measures 41.6mm by 15.2mm wide at the centre.
These really are an exquisite pair of antique cameo earrings that take attention to detail to a whole new level.