Collection online

gimmel-ring

  • Object type

  • Museum number

    AF.1097

  • Description

    Gimmel-ring; gold; enamelled; bezel, set with ruby and aquamarine, in form of quatrefoil flower with pendant leaves decorated with blue, black and white scrolls; inner faces of bezel decorated with scrolls; shoulders moulded in form of scrolls; inscription on inner surfaces revealed when ring opened.

    More 

  • Date

    • 16thC
    • 19th Century (?)
  • Production place

  • Materials

  • Technique

  • Dimensions

    • Diameter: 1.15 inches
    • Weight: 171 grains
  • Inscriptions

      • Inscription Type

        inscription
      • Inscription Position

        inner surfaces
      • Inscription Language

        Latin
      • Inscription Content

        QUOD DEUS CONJUNXIT HOMO NON SEPARET
      • Inscription Comment

        Enamelled.
  • Curator's comments

    Text from Dalton 1912, Catalogue of Finger Rings:
    The betrothal or wedding-ring of Sir Thomas Gresham, now exhibited in the Loan Court at the Victoria and Albert Museum, South Kensington, by Mr. G. C. Leveson-Gower, is of similar design and bears the same legend.

    For a similar gimmel ring see Chadour 1994 no 706
    According to the Braybrooke catalogue, 'A splendid gold gimmel ring, with enamelled and jewelled twin or double hoops, which play one within another, like the links of a chain. Each hoop has one of its sides convex, the other flat, and each is set with a stone, one a fine ruby, the other an acqua marine or beryl, so that upon bringing together the flat surfaces of the hoops, the latter immediately unite in one ring, and as they close, the stones slide into contact, forming a head to the whole. The inside flat surfaces are inscribed with the words, "Quod deus conjunxit homo non separet:" part on one hoop, part on the other, so as to be legible when these are opened, but entirely concealed when they are re-united in one ring. This seems to be an exception to the general rule with respect to rings of the same denomination, since the hoops cannot be dissevered according to the usual custom of betrothals. Dr Nares however says, "Gimmel rings certainly had links within each other," and they were likewise known by the name of Hawberke, according to Morgan in his "Sphere of Gentry," evidently because hawberkes were composed of rings linked with each other like the present example. A fine one of gold, of similar construction, was found about sixty years ago, near Horsley Down, in Surrey, inscribed "Use de Vertu" (Archaeologia, vol 14 pg 7) The present specimen was purchased of Mr Durlacher, New Bond Street, May, 1856. Mr D. bought it at Paris, from a person who obtained it at Florence. The workmanship is Italian, and the date about the end of the 15th or beginning of the 16th century. -162grs.' . .

    More 

  • Bibliography

    • Tait 1976 440b bibliographic details
    • Tait 1986a 810 bibliographic details
    • Dalton 1912 992 bibliographic details
    • Braybrooke 1873 no 158 bibliographic details
  • Location

    On display: G46/dc5/p4/no8

  • Acquisition name

  • Acquisition date

    1897

  • Department

    Britain, Europe and Prehistory

  • Registration number

    AF.1097

Marriage-ring; gold; hoop with loose rings of twisted wire; five bosses of filigree with pellets; between bosses, enamelled ornaments in different shades of pale blue and green, with four loops enamelled in apple green on either side of bezel, and three of four hanging braided wire pendant loops remain; gable with two small windows and enamelled imbrications in dark blue; hinged gold plate within is unengraved; inscribed legend on upper plate.

Marriage-ring; gold; hoop with loose rings of twisted wire; five bosses of filigree with pellets; between bosses, enamelled ornaments in different shades of pale blue and green, with four loops enamelled in apple green on either side of bezel, and three of four hanging braided wire pendant loops remain; gable with two small windows and enamelled imbrications in dark blue; hinged gold plate within is unengraved; inscribed legend on upper plate.

Image description

Recommend


Feedback

If you’ve noticed a mistake or have any further information about this object, please email: collectiondatabase@britishmuseum.org 

View open data for this object with SPARQL endpoint

Object reference number: MCN1465

British Museum collection data is also available in the W3C open data standard, RDF, allowing it to join and relate to a growing body of linked data published by organisations around the world.

View this object

Support the Museum:
donate online

The Museum makes its collection database available to be used by scholars around the world. Donations will help support curatorial, documentation and digitisation projects.

About the database

The British Museum collection database is a work in progress. New records, updates and images are added every week.

More about the database 

Supporters

Work on this database is supported by a range of sponsors, donors and volunteers.

More about supporters and how you
can help  

Loading...