Antique Victorian French Ormolu Gold Mercury Plated Foiled Blue Glass Drop Necklace

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A beautiful antique French necklace that features the rare mercury plating technique known as Ormolu. Ormolu was a rather dangerous gilding technique that was eventually band due to the hazards of workers being exposed to mercury fumes with most gilders not living to see 40. Ormolu plating is particularly rare to see in jewellery form and tended to be used on larger items such as clocks, and decorative furnishings.

The necklace features ornate filigree links with round panels of matte foil glass made to emulate lapis. Hanging from the necklace are three matching foil glass drops. The necklace is marked 'Garanti Dorure au Mercure' Signifying the technique that was used to create it.

Please click here to read a more in depth insight into Ormolu / Mercury plating.


One glass drop has a chip to the top of it which can be seen in picture 4. The chip is on the back of the stone so it can not seen when the piece is worn. The necklace remains in good antique condition overall.

Dimensions & Date

Length - 15 inches
Date - Victorian

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