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jewelry glossary

Antique jewelry glossary

Welcome to our extensive antique jewelry glossary with around 1,500 jewelry related entries.If you feel you are missing an explanation, feel free to let us know and we will add it.

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Intaglio

intaglio

See our: intaglio jewelry.

A style of decoration (or an object so made) created by engraving or carving below the surface so that the apparent elevations of the design are hollowed out and an impression from the design yields an image in relief. The background is not cut away, but is left in the plane of the highest areas of the design. It is the opposite of a cameo.

It is sometimes called 'hollow relief or 'coelanaglyphic'. Greek goldsmiths did intaglio work on metal, but such decoration is more often found on gemstones, coral, and crystal. Articles in intaglio were sometimes worn as an ornament alone, or mounted in a finger ring, button, brooch, pendant, etc.

From: An Illustrated Dictionary of Jewelry, autor: Harold Newman, publishers: Thames and Hudson

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