Exquisite 18k Gold Victorian Miniature Portrait Mumtaz Mahal Pendant Necklace
Presented is a truly exceptional quality antique Victorian hand painted miniature portrait necklace, in 18 karat and 10 karat gold. The pendant is an incredibly intricate hand painted portrait of Mumtaz Mahal, the empress consort of the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan, for whom the Taj Mahal was built and named. The portrait shows her fully bedecked in jewelry and fine garments, with a prominent crescent shaped headdress. All of the work is astonishing in its detail, even down to the gilt detailing on her finery which catches the light in a way the photos simply can't catch. The portrait is in an oval pendant setting with a ropetwist chain design around the exterior and a glass mounted bezel on the back, where a lock of hair or photo or whatever you like could be concealed. The interior of the back has an engraved inscription which we can't fully make out. The chain of the necklace is very well made from hand soldered gold links, with little decorative hand engraved ivy leaf flourishes. Please note the way the chain is made it clasps on the side, and the clasp will be visible when worn, but is not prominent. The pendant is older and dates to around the 1820s-1840s, while the chain is a later addition from around the 1860s-1870s.
This piece is not stamped or hallmarked but we have tested both pieces with nitric acid and guarantee the locket to be 18 karat gold. The chain and clasp are 10 karat gold.
The locket itself measures about 1 ½ inches long including the loop/bail at the top, or about 1 1/8 by 7/8 of an inch. The chain is about 15 ¾ inches long.
The total weight for both the locket and the chain is 26.4 grams. The locket alone weighs about 9.7 grams, so the chain portion weighs about 16.7 grams.