In the eighteenth century, pastes - rhinestones made of glass - enjoyed great popularity as less expensive, sparkling jewels that rivaled the radiance of real gems. In contrast to diamonds, pastes could be more freely faceted and shaped to fit a variety of designs, making them ideal candidates to fill the scrolling forms of rococo jewelry. Over sixty brilliant-cut pastes ornament this silver shoe buckle, which may have been worn by Martha Washington.

Description

Circular silver shoe buckle with a convex profile set with sixty-nine, brilliant-cut clear glass pastes along the cast, open frame; three of the original pastes are missing; the two largest pastes are set directly above and below the vertical hinge; pastes set in three ribbon like swags surround each of the largest pastes; vertical hinge of three segments, two of which support a cooking-pot shaped roll with two spikes; the central segment of the hinge supports a two tined, forked tongue.

Date

1760-1780


Geography


Material/Technique

Silver, glass, iron


Dimensions

Overall: 2 3/16 in. x 2 in. x 11/16 in. (5.56 cm x 5.08 cm x 1.75 cm)


Credit Line

Gift of Leila Garnett Burdett Daingerfield in the name of Edward Abbott Burdett, 1917
Conservation courtesy of the Life Guard Society of Historic Mount Vernon


Object Number

W-459


Colors (Beta)


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