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The pin has been in a long time collection, Jet is very hard to fine in today’s antique. The pin is hand carved with smooth detail and texture.
Jet has been used for mourning for thousands of years. Highly suitable for carving, examples have been found in prehistoric caves. The use of jet was known to the Greeks as far back as 200 B. C. The Venerable Bede (673-735 A.
D.) wrote of jet, "Britain has much excellent jet which is black and sparkling, glittering at the fire and when heated drives away serpents". An early superstition was that its shiny surface was brilliant enough to deflect the evil eye away from the person wearing it.
The finest jet, however, was mined in Whitby-Yorkshire, England. Mining started in the early 19th century for Mourning Jewelry, and by 1850 there were fifty jet workshops in Whitby. Jewelers found jet to be lightweight and well suited to carving.
It was the perfect material for making large lockets, brooches, bracelets and necklaces. After Albert's death, Queen Victoria decreed that only jet jewelry was to be worn at court for the first year of mourning. By 1873 two hundred jet shops sprung up in Whitby.
Today it is illegal to mine jet in Whitby because the only jet left is in seams in the walls of the cliffs over the town. To remove it from the cliffs would cause them to tumble down and destroy the town.
The Jet Bar Pin is 1 3/8 of an inch long and ½ inch at the widest area. Excellent condition with the T-bar pin and C-clasp with a current insured replacement value of $550.00