English Giardinetti Diamond Ring, ca. 1780

Value (2006) | $10,000 Retail

GUEST:
It was actually my great-grandmother's... well, my step-great-grandmother's, then it went to my grandmother, then my aunt, then to me.

APPRAISER:
You told me a story about taking it to a jeweler or an antique dealer...

GUEST:
He's an antique dealer/jeweler. He said two, three thousand dollars, but he wouldn't actually give me a number unless I sold it to him.

APPRAISER:
Really?

GUEST:
Yeah. (laughing) So I didn't like that.

APPRAISER:
Oh, you didn't have a good feeling.

GUEST:
No.

APPRAISER:
This is an antique ring. It's English.

GUEST:
Oh, it's English.

APPRAISER:
And it's a diamond ring. These are the old-cut diamonds, called rose-cut diamonds. There's a very large one in the center. The design of the ring is-- Italian name-- "giardinetti."

GUEST:
Oh, okay,

APPRAISER:
And the Italian word "giardinetti" means "garden," "giardin," or a flower arrangement. So the big diamond is the vase and the smaller diamonds are the flower arrangements. And that's done over a background of blue enameled, very thick glass. They sometimes call it Bristol glass for Bristol in England that was famous for making this very thick, beautiful cobalt-blue glass. And then it has another border of diamonds around the outside of it. So, it's a complex design and a very beautiful one in a long, navette shape.

GUEST:
The outside, would that be baguettes, or are they actually individually...?

APPRAISER:
They're individually cut and faceted stones. Now, the construction of this predates platinum in gold, so the diamonds were set in silver, which was the jeweler's quality metal that they had. And this ring is very old. It's about 1780.

GUEST:
Wow.

APPRAISER:
This is what we would call Georgian-- George III, to be exact-- and, uh, in wonderful condition. No damage. No stones missing. No bops to the enamel. Those are things that hurt the ring. This is in just beautiful, pristine, almost unworn condition. And all those things bring the value up. So, if people tell you old diamonds aren't worth as much, that's not always true. Sometimes the antique value overtakes the small diamonds that are in it. The retail value of this ring from a store that specializes in selling antique jewelry, this ring would achieve about $10,000.

GUEST:
Wow. Well, that's a lot more than...

APPRAISER:
A lot more than you thought.

GUEST:
I thought.

APPRAISER:
I'm glad you held onto it, and I'm sure glad you brought it to the ROADSHOW.

GUEST:
Well, I'm glad I did, too. This is really good. Thank you.

Appraisal Details

Appraiser
Edith Weber Antique Jewelry
New York, New York
Appraised value (2006)
$10,000 Retail
Event
Philadelphia, PA (August 05, 2006)
Material
Diamonds, Silver

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Value can change: The value of an item is dependent upon many things, including the condition of the object itself, trends in the market for that kind of object, and the location where the item will be sold. These are just some of the reasons why the answer to the question "What's it worth?" is so often "It depends."

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