Victorian Ferns, Sunflower & Ivy Rheumatic Ring

Regular price $975.00

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Since the discovery of copper in the blood, many people believe that magnets have therapeutic properties and that rheumatism - aka arthritis - could be relieved by wearing a magnet on your skin. It's not true, but people were desperate for relief, and Victorian snake oil salesmen were desperate for business. Patents always made dubious products seem legit, so this "anti rheumatism" ring is stamped with the official-looking details ANTI RHEU GEM PAT. Advertisements exist from 1903 and 1905 for this product, and in them we can see many marketing tactics in their infancy. "Worn by the King of Siam". (Celeb endorsements!) Testimonials, including from the Countess of Cavan, whose ring made her "experience an absence of neuralgia". The manufacturer - so charitable! - claims to have given "free gifts of anti-rheumatic rings to the poor." But in the end, they made trendy jewelry. Although "fern madness" was dying down by the Edwardian era, they remained popular "as a fond symbol of pleasurable pursuits". 12k rolled gold exterior, magnetic interior.

MATERIALS: 12k rolled gold, magnetic interior

AGE: c. 1880

CONDITION: Very good

SIZE: 6.25, cannot be resized; 7.1mm shank