Georgian Pineapple Carved Coral Three Stone Ring

Regular price $1,800.00

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MATERIALS: 10k gold (tests), 3 7.5mm x 6mm carved coral cabochons

AGE: c. 1820

SIZE: size 7.75, can be resized; 8.3mm head, 2mm shank.

There have always been status symbols - think "status handbag". But for about 250 years, the pineapple was the HEIGHT of prestige and luxury. One could be worth $14,000 dollars, and they were used as decor at aristocratic dinner parties (not eaten, god no). Often one would be RENTED, along with it's own security guard, until it was stinky and rotten. In the 16th and 17th centuries, it was one of the more wild-looking foods brought back from the New World and Asia. Some people thought the spiky top of the fruit looked like a golden crown, so the monarchy jumped on the pineapple bandwagon. Charles' son and successor Charles II was so impressed with this pineapple/crown symbolism that he commissioned a portrait of himself being presented with one. 

During the Georgian era, when this ring was made, the richest people in England were beginning to grow their own pineapples. It was a hobby for only the filthy rich. To create the light and heat required to replicate tropical conditions, people had to convert their already-expensive Orangeries into "pineries" using fire. Many early pineries burned down or killed the baby plants with smoke. The Gentleman's Magazine of 1764 estimated that it cost £150 (more than $35,000 today) to build a pinerie. And pineapples can take YEARS to mature. Understand now why it was a status symbol? 

Whoever wore this ring might have been lucky enough to have seen a pineapple in person once or twice - maybe got a sniff? But did she ever get a taste? I can't say.