SOLD: Victorian gold locket with bird, natural pearls and flowers by Harry Emanuel, 1855-73


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I’m so excited to have found this rare and marvellously romantic locket by Harry Emanuel, the renowned 19th century London jeweller.

There is a similar example in the V&A – a brooch with a locket back. If you scroll through the photos it’s the piece with a black background, in an image taken from the V&A’s website.

My locket isn’t marked, but nor is the museum piece. There is a slightly different arrangement of the exquisitely rendered forget-me-nots but close examination of the motifs confirms that these two jewels have come from the same workshop.

I’m fortunate to have owned two similar examples in the past so had no problem recognising this.

You can see one of them – another locket – in the gallery; it has the white background. This photo was taken when it was sold at auction by my customer many years later.

I had the first example more than 35 years ago when I was a dealer in London. Not surprisingly, I don’t have a picture of that one.

I’d seen the V&A’s Harry Emanuel pieces in person so I knew what I had even then.

Eagle eyes will spot that the bales are different on the two lockets. Such component parts were often made by small specialist workshops which were dotted around London.

I bought this exceptional jewel well. So I’m delighted to be offering it for less than the price my second locket fetched at auction nine years ago.


• Handmade in 15-carat yellow gold
• Three natural pearls adorn the nest; the bird’s eye is a cabochon garnet
• Six flowers are depicted in blue, navy, yellow and red enamel
• The panels inside have tiny tabs that act as handles to make them easier to open – my expert jeweller says he has never before seen this feature
• Approximately 5.5cm (2 1/4 inches) long, not including the bale; 3.5cm (just under 1 1/4 inches) wide
• Weight is 20.6 grams
• In excellent antique condition: there is one tiny bit of enamel missing from one petal
• Will come in a Karen Deakin gift box (the antique box is not for sale)
• Note: the antique gold chains are not for sale but I have others available – please get in touch if you’d like information about them

Please examine the photographs carefully – they form part of the description.

I’d be very happy to send more information and images. Layaway available.

I accept returns if you’re not delighted with your purchase.

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