- US Size: Sits at 5.25 on the shop mandrel, though it fits more like a 5.00
- Total Carat Weight: 2.19 ct
- Precious Metal Weight: 2.64 dwt
- Precious Metal Material: Tests between 9k and 10k rosy, warm yellow gold
- Dimensions: This ring faces up 9.92 mm north to south (width). The band tapers from about 8.35 mm at the shoulders (just past the belcher center setting) to about 3.90 mm at its thinnest width at the base of the shank. The ring rises roughly 7.75 mm from the finger at the top of the moonstone.
- Weight: A very nice heft of 4.10 grams
Markings: Marked on the interior of the shank with an oversized serif uppercase "I" oriented horizontally lengthwise, which identifies the ring's maker as Irons & Russell, Inc., specifically dating the ring to 1893-1904, during which time the company operated under this iteration of title and used this particular maker's mark (please read "The Story" below for more on this topic.
Era: The marking indicates a window of time between 1893 and 1904.
Buyer Notes: The moonstone shows chatoyancy, also known as the cat eye effect, producing a refracted "line" of lighter color/light when viewed in profile from the side. From the top, the optical effect is not linear, but appears as a glowing orb that "follows the eye" as it is moved. When touched, stone shows some wiggle in-mount, a characteristic that is normal for all jewelry of any age, both newer and older. This may be easily rectified post-purchase; we always advise buyers to have prongs checked by their preferred jeweler BEFORE wearing and enjoying new-to-you, pre-loved jewelry. Under a jeweler's loupe, there is very, very subtle evidence of a historic resizing.
- Center Stone Type: Moonstone
- Center Stone Count: One (1)
- Center Stone Carat Weight: 2.19 ct by formula using the dimensions supplied and per the specific gravity of moonstone
- Center Stone Dimensions: 8.00 x 7.90 x 5.00 mm, as approximated and measured within mounting so as to preserve the piece's historic integrity.
- Center Stone Shape: Round Cabochon Cut/demi-sphere
- Center Stone Color: Silvery-white; this stone does not have the vivid sky blue adularescence and is instead an icy, glowing hue
- Center Stone Clarity: Translucent with chatoyancy from profile view
Classic, minimalist and historic, this ring boasts the iconic Victorian 'belcher' design and is quite sizable in scale and impact. This ring is set with a beloved gemstone choice: moonstones are imbued with thousands of years' worth of history, lore and symbolism. Ancient Romans believed that moonstone was actually fragmented moon beams, while Native Americans believe that moonstone brings visions in dreams, and is given as a wedding gift to bring blessings and good fortune. During the 1800s and early 1900s, it was thought that moonstone could bring feelings of affection and passion, and if placed in one’s mouth during a full moon, could provide a peek into one’s romantic future. Moonstones are steeped in rich meaning by countless cultures around the globe.
One can recognize belcher rings by examining the area where the prongs meet the band’s shoulders; true belchers are those in which the prongs are cut from the shank directly rather than externally affixed to the shank like modern rings. The result is a low profile effect, where the center stone appears to hover within the mount, showing just a peek of skin beneath and through the scalloped and scooped pattern of the setting. Various versions of this style were very popular between the 1860s and 1890s, and less frequently after the turn of the century. Colloquially, such rings are known as “Buttercup” rings because of the prongs’ resemblance to the opening of a buttercup bloom. Conversely, many Belchers are misidentified as “gypsy” rings, but gypsy rings are those that have their gems embedded within the band, set flush (during the late 19th/early 20th century, these were often enhanced with simple star-like engraved lines), and held by either very delicate flat bead prongs or with a variation of the rub-over setting.
This ring was crafted by Providence, Rhode Island jeweler Charles F. Irons whose work was something as a business expansion and transition of his father's original solder plate jewelry business which operated between 1855 and 1861. The business later became Irons & Russell, Inc. (1893-1904) which is the iteration indicated by the letter "I" stamp in this ring. During this time, the company is listed in a renowned US jeweler's publication as makers of "... pins, buttons, charms, medals, plated emblems, earrings and religious medals." while makers of a variety of accessories, most noteworthy is that they are not known for making rings-- adding a certain intrigue to this piece's mysterious story! The company evolved into the Irons & Russell Company by 1904, and operated as such until the late 1960s. It was eventually sold to S. Scarf, Inc. in in 1968, which today, is a branch of Barrows Industries, Inc.
Through the ring's refined silhouette and otherworldly beauty shines alluring history and meaning. It offers a lustrous glow and a kiss of moody glamour to any look, is perfect for both solo statement wear, and pairs wonderfully with other antique and vintage jewelry treasures.
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General Information: All additional jewelry boxes, ring boxes, and other jewelry items pictured alongside a featured listing are considered props, are for photographic and display purposes only and are not included in the transaction unless otherwise noted. Items do not come with physical documentation, appraisals, or certifications, unless explicitly stated in the item description and/or title. While jewelry is inspected upon procurement by the shop as well as prior to shipment, Revival Fine Jewelry cannot guarantee a warranty once items leave our inventory, given the delicate and individual nature of secondhand articles and the unaccountability of buyer handling post-purchase.
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All layaway terms may be found here, and all shop policies may be found here.
Layaway is available for full priced, non-sale items priced $600.00 USD or greater, and items may not be combined to attain price-eligibility. Plans are offered as 3-month/90-day maximum terms.
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Request a layaway plan via email here. Remember to specify your desired item by providing its link, title or SKU/code.