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A wide, ornamented, jewelled necklace worn tightly around a woman's throat.
Such pieces were used from the 16th century but became popular in the Victorian era, when they were first in the form of a wide band of ribbon ornamented with bands of gemstones or cheaper beads. Later, in the 1880's, they took the form of bands of metal ornamented with rows of pearls, or multiple strings of ungraduated pearls, sometimes up to twelve rows and, c. 1990-10, had in the front an elaborate rectangular ornament (called a plaque de cou).
Such collars were also made of jet or coral. The French term is collier de chien.
From: An Illustrated Dictionary of Jewelry, autor: Harold Newman, publishers: Thames and Hudson