- Museum number
Gold brooch in the form of a padlock set with pearls and with a dark blue enamelled centre. Image top right.
- Production date
- 1800 (circa)
Height: 3.30 centimetres
- Curator's comments
- Possibly once supplied with a key on a chain. A variation on the popular small charms of this period in the form of a heart or heart-shaped padlock and key (a version of Knight’s device for ‘Thou hast the key’, Knight’s Gem and Device Book, 1836).
See: J. Rudoe, ‘Queen Charlotte’s Jewellery’, in Jonathan Marsden (ed.), The Wisdom of George III, Royal Collection, 2005, fig. 71 (top row right). Caption: ‘Group of jewels in the form of padlocks and keys, some set with hair. Gold, gemstones, pearls and enamel, English, c.1800–10.’ Text: Many jewels contained messages and can be paralleled exactly in the Prince of Wales’s accounts and the Garrard ledgers. For example the Queen [Charlotte] had three hearts’ ease or pansy brooches (meaning ‘thoughts’, from the French ‘pensée’), accurately depicted in amethysts and topaz to represent the top and bottom petals (24 May, lot 11 [in the Christie’s 1819 sale catalogue of the Queen’s possessions]. . . . There were further message jewels in the form of keys or padlocks (17 May, lot 32) almost identical with those purchased by the Prince of Wales from around 1800 (fig. 71). (Charlotte Gere)
- On display (G47/dc8)
- Acquisition date
- Britain, Europe and Prehistory
- Registration number
- Additional IDs
Miscellaneous number: HG.720 (masterlist number)