A gold and shell cameo brooch,
Lot 163
A gold and shell cameo brooch,
circa 1860
Sold for £27,500 (US$ 46,222) inc. premium
Auction Details
Lot Details
A gold and shell cameo brooch, circa 1860
The oval shell cameo depicting Cupid within a textured border of ropetwist and beaded decoration, engraved on reverse "FANNY" and "HOLMAN TO EDITH I.M. 20 DEC 1866", cameo rubbed, brooch length 5.0cm


  • A gift from William Holman Hunt to his first wife Fanny, probably purchased from Giuliano. In Diana Holman Hunt's memoir "My Grandmothers and I", Edith explains to a young Diana, "this cameo brooch was my sister's. Holman gave it to her on her their marriage and when she died it came to me." The brooch features in Hunt's portrait of Fanny, painted after her death, which is in the Toledo Museum of Art, Ohio. Edith also wore it when posing for her portrait in The Birthday. The brooch and its history is further illustrated and described in Gere/Munn "Artists' Jewellery", pp 64-65, colour plate 23.
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