“. . . a delightful and presentation worthy coffee table book, Understanding Jewellery is also, in the truest sense, serves as an inviting educational tool with exhaustive encyclopedic explanations of jewelry starting in the late 18th century to the present.”
The first thing that needs to be discussed here is the physicality of the book. Understanding Jewellery is a magnificently executed volume in both its grandeur and quality. The book is just brimming with exquisitely photographed jewelry and reproduced on the heaviest of paper stock. So not only does this make the book a delightful and presentation worthy coffee table book, Understanding Jewellery is also, in the truest sense, serves as an inviting educational tool with exhaustive encyclopedic explanations of jewelry starting in the late 18th century to the present.
The authors begin in a very logical way by explaining what any one might need to know about stones including shapes, color, clarity, cut, and hardness. The stone segment then goes on to speak beyond the normal diamonds, rubies, emeralds, and sapphires and continues extensively into all sorts of other precious and semiprecious colored stones.
Once the chronology begins, each era is broken down into whichever of these categories might be appropriate or in vogue during that time span. The classifications include earring, necklaces, brooches, bracelets, parures, tiaras, hair ornaments/combs, pendants, and rings. It should be noted that each is clearly and demonstratively explained without losing the reader’s interest
While you read about all of this unbelievably beautiful jewelry, the authors further enlighten us with terms and vocabulary that are germane to the subject matter. See if you recognize any of this jeweler jargon: ferronere, stomacher, cannetille, carbuncle, jarretiere, or collets.
Furthermore, we are reminded of some of the great jewelers such as David Webb, JAR, Boivin, Lalique, and Gabriel Lemonnier as well as the usual suspects when the topic is fine jewelry.
All in all, Understanding Jewellery is a very satisfying read on so many levels and will certainly bring great enjoyment.