Dunstable Swan necklace

    SKU: cmcj34330

    £65.00 Members' price *


    This charming swan pendant is modelled on the Medieval Dunstable Swan Jewel currently on display in the British Museum.

    The Dunstable Swan Jewel is a livery badge of the highest order and quality. To wear such an item was a declaration of allegiance to a noble family or a king. The original is made from opaque white enamel fused over gold, a technique known as émail en ronde bosse that developed in Paris in the second half of the fourteenth century.

    The emblem of the swan was very popular among nobles eager to demonstrate their descent from the Swan Knight of courtly romance. The most notable English family of the fourteenth century to use this symbol was that of De Bohun. The swan was adopted by the house of Lancaster when Henry of Lancaster married Mary de Bohun in 1380. When Henry became King Henry IV in 1399 the swan badge became associated with the Prince of Wales.

    Although descriptions of similarly fine pieces of livery jewellery exist in documentary form, the Dunstable Swan Jewel is the only known surviving example of such a badge. It probably belonged to a prominent supporter of a rich and influential family, such as the de Bohuns or the house of Lancaster. Emblems made of less rich materials would have been distributed to supporters of lower social status, including servants.

    Our interpretation of this motif is a necklace of sterling silver with gold plate detailing on the pendant.


    Product code: cmcj34330
    Exhibition: Shakespeare
    World culture: Medieval Europe
    Material: sterling silver with gold plate detailing
    Size: Length 45cm. Swan pendant 2cm tall
    Weight: 0.064kg
    Standard UK delivery: 5 working days. Overseas times may vary

    This price is inclusive of VAT

    Every purchase supports the Museum

    Delivery & returns

    Delivery charges: are calculated depending on the weight (kg) and destination of the order. The order total is displayed on the payment page before you confirm your order.

    Estimated Delivery times:
    UK and Europe: 5 - 10 working days.
    Rest of the world: 10 to 28 working days.

    Premium delivery: is available at the checkout for UK addresses only.

    For more information, please see our full Delivery policy here

    If for any reason you are not entirely happy with books and other products purchased from the shop, we will refund the value of the goods supplied. Please contact Customer Services directly on 0800 218 2222 (or from abroad on +44 (0)20 7079 0970) for individual advice.

    Unfortunately we are unable to offer refunds or exchanges on pierced earrings for hygiene reasons, unless they are faulty.

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