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South Sea Black Natural pearl? Opinions please.

Bodecia

Pearl Designer & Collector
Joined
Jan 25, 2007
Messages
952
I believe this is a natural black pearl from the South Seas, possibly around the Tahitian Islands. To me it has the shape, surface and lustre of a natural. Plus the slightly hammered look.

Would love some opinions on it. I do intend to send it for certification asap. That depends on sales before Xmas. :( But as some may have noticed I do need to send a few things off for same.

Dawn - Bodecia
http://www.ebay.com/sch/dawncee333/m.html
eBay Seller ID dawncee333 Natural pearl collector & seller. And all round pearl lover.
 

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Lagoon Island Pearls

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 8, 2009
Messages
1,913
It has distinct peacock overtones to suggest Tahitian origin. Likewise, the shape and surface present as natural.

This piece definitely merits a trip to the lab and I'm eager to see the results.
 

Lagoon Island Pearls

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 8, 2009
Messages
1,913
Incidentally Dawn, here is a color palette. This is consistent with other Tahitian exemplars and suggests no post-harvest treatment or coloration.
 

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Bodecia

Pearl Designer & Collector
Joined
Jan 25, 2007
Messages
952
Thank you Dave,

I must slowly read your thread on colour palettes and start to really understand it. :)

I forgot to put in the size of the pearl. It is 9.20 x 8.25mm and deep has to be app but 8mm the closest I can measure with my callipers. Not a bad size :)

I have had it for years now and still not gotten around to having it checked but I am hoping to have the money to have some of my best pieces checked out before long now. I know you hate eBay but I did buy it there but way before every man and his dog starting loving and appreciating naturals again.

I have what I think might be a Mississippi so might start a thread on that one. I am truly not sure what it is.

Dawn - Bodecia
http://www.ebay.com/sch/dawncee333/m.html
eBay Seller ID dawncee333 Natural pearl collector & seller. And all round pearl lover.
 

Lagoon Island Pearls

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 8, 2009
Messages
1,913
Looking forward to seeing it.

Is there any way you can candle pearls? I think you'd do well to adopt the technique to aide your work.
 

Bodecia

Pearl Designer & Collector
Joined
Jan 25, 2007
Messages
952
Yes, I actually tried candling the other day but my iMac doesn't seem to work with the little microscope thingy I have. I do have a normal PC so will set that up and try again. Tomorrow I am going into town so will pick up some more suitable little boxes to work with. I have different little lights to try with. Might take me a couple of days or longer if I am useless at it but I will be trying. :) Love that thread. Have it saved.

Dawn - Bodecia
http://www.ebay.com/sch/dawncee333/m.html
eBay Seller ID dawncee333 Natural pearl collector & seller. And all round pearl lover.
 

kiwipaul

Well-known member
Joined
May 21, 2013
Messages
195
Hi Dawn, that is a gorgeous pearl, and I guessing from the setting that the ring is very old, so it has to be a natural.

Those diamonds look to be very old fashioned cuts, are they diamond chips, or point cut, or rose cut?

By the way I see you have listed two extraordinary natural necklaces on eBay I haven't seen before, good luck with those:

VICTORIAN ANTIQUE NATURAL BASRA PEARL NECKLACE 17 kt GOLD DIAMOND & RUBY CLASP
http://www.ebay.com/itm/261323255177

VICTORIAN ANTIQUE NATURAL BASRA PEARL NECKLACE 17kt GOLD PEARL STUDDED CLASP
http://www.ebay.com/itm/310788001437

they are both so nice it would be hard to choose between them!
 

Bodecia

Pearl Designer & Collector
Joined
Jan 25, 2007
Messages
952
Hi Paul, LitGeek & Dave,

Thanks to you. The diamonds are tiny point cut so not a feast for the eyes but I do love the design and it is possibly to wear 2 pearl rings on the same finger without them rubbing. When I wear it I also put on a antique 22 kt yellow gold ring last which is very thin and rather tight but acts as a safety for them. Not that I go anywhere special these days except online. But they are lovely to drool over. :)

Dave, I should have mentioned that the ring is from France to the best of my knowledge. I did not buy it from France but from Israel and was told then it was French and it has marks which seem to bear that out although they are very hard to see . Must check out the karats again.

Dawn - Bodecia
http://www.ebay.com/sch/dawncee333/m.html
eBay Seller ID dawncee333 Natural pearl collector & seller. And all round pearl lover.
 

kiwipaul

Well-known member
Joined
May 21, 2013
Messages
195
Hi Dawn, I'm thinking that is a really, really old ring due to the point cut diamonds.

They were out of regular use by the beginning of the Victorian period, although of course old ones continued to be recycled.

It would be fascinating to know how a natural black south sea pearl reached Europe at that early date.

It must've been a sensational rarity in it's day.
 

GemGeek

Pearlista
Joined
Sep 20, 2006
Messages
9,235
Pteria sterna and Pinctada mazatlanica produced most of the world's "black" pearls before pearl culturing commenced. Thousands and thousands of these pearls made their way to Europe as the Sea of Cortez, and Baja, Mexico, were ravaged by overfishing due to the insatiable demand for pearls. Anything is possible, but it is not likely that it would be a black south sea pearl.

The same colors can also come from Pteria penguin. I have seen many antique Pteria penguin blister pearls on stick pins, as well as abalone, which can also sport similar coloration.

A lab can tell you if it is natural, which it surely must be. A big lab with sophisticated equipment and pearl expertise can analyze the chemical elements to tell where many pearls are grown and often the species of mollusk. As fun as it may be to guess what the pearl may be, there is a tremendous overlap in appearance of many kinds of pearls. I saw a pearl at Paspaley in Darwin that looked like the finest 8mm akoya pearl, but it was a South Sea. You can't sight-ID with certainty, but you can try. :)
 

kiwipaul

Well-known member
Joined
May 21, 2013
Messages
195
Hi all , this is a fascinating piece. My opinion on the age of this ring is purely based on its design, and the point diamonds.

I must say the curved and fluid shape of the band and mount has a "modern" (Art Nouveau - Edwardian) feel, while the point diamonds were last prevalent in the Regency period (1830's).

My gut feeling is that if this ring is French, it is Post Napoleonic prior to the Second Empire, ie 1815 to 1852.

If this is the case it is more likely to be Sea of Cortez pearl than a Tahitian, as the French influence in Tahiti was still weak in 1850 and I doubt Tahitian blacks were even discovered then.

While the actual date of construction is hard establish with certainty, this is a very, very interesting antique ring.
 
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Bodecia

Pearl Designer & Collector
Joined
Jan 25, 2007
Messages
952
I tried it with a black light earlier today and it did not fluoresce that I could see and I did have a cortez with it at the time and it slightly changed. That light's batteries are low so I set up a lamp with a new light. But I put away that tray of pearls (before dinner for safety) and cannot find them. They are safe .. somewhere ? but where. Does anyone else lose their pearls? I am going out of my mind looking for them.

In the meantime I have some photos taken in daylight. Was a windy day so hard to take photos outside but here they are. That is why the blutack. I will be adding better photos regarding the River Pearl and Unknown (Basra) pearls plus some more.


Dawn - Bodecia
http://www.ebay.com/sch/dawncee333/m.html
eBay Seller ID dawncee333 Natural pearl collector & seller. And all round pearl lover.
 

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Bodecia

Pearl Designer & Collector
Joined
Jan 25, 2007
Messages
952
Hi GemGeek, thanks for the information. I actually have a couple of antique Pteria penguin blister pearls set in stick pins. This pearl does't look like those but I will check up on Pteria sterna and Pinctada mazatlanica … I have an abalone pearl which was in a stick pin too.

Paul I think it has the fluid look of Art Nouveau too but when I bought it, it was listed as Art Deco which I think is wrong. Although I am remembering back a few years and I didn't write anything down but for some reason the details on this ring/pearl have stayed in my memory. The beauty of it I supposed.

The white pearl in the last photo is the one that needs peeling. I will start a thread on it but think people will be sick of me listing tonight. :(

Have you seen the better photos of my golden/bronze/pink etc. pearl ring? Although you should be asleep and actually so should I.

Dawn - Bodecia
http://www.ebay.com/sch/dawncee333/m.html
eBay Seller ID dawncee333 Natural pearl collector & seller. And all round pearl lover.
 

GemGeek

Pearlista
Joined
Sep 20, 2006
Messages
9,235
Some Pteria penguin look just gray and others are rainbow. It really depends on the pearl. You may never know for sure, but it is lovely. I really like these photos! :)
 

kiwipaul

Well-known member
Joined
May 21, 2013
Messages
195
Wow, I continue to be blown away by the depth of knowledge available through this forum.

Thank you GemGeek for bringing the suggestion of Pteria penguin into the mix.

After looking at couple of pics on the Web that would seem to be a real possibility for Dawn's pearl.
 
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