A magnificent antique Art Nouveau chignon hair comb, French in origin, set with loads of cut diamonds and with 8 superb graduated size pearls on that Art Nouveau swirl of silver. We'd date it c.1860-90, depending on if it's an Art Nouveau piece (later) or a mid-Victorian one (earlier). The French were remarkable for the pieces they made with silver and diamond settings. It's made like Marie-Antoinette's controversial necklace, but I digress. There is a tiny diamond-shaped punch mark, we can't fully capture nor read it, but it is the silversmith's mark. If we could make it out, I would be able to tell you which artisan created and made it, so thorough is the French control system. I'll let you count the diamonds. There is one small one missing. The rest are still in place and they're cut, not chips. The pearls are gorgeous , graduating from 4mm to 5.5mm. High pearlescent shimmer of top quality pearls. Remarkable piece of jewelry for your hair. Or your collection and enjoyment.
Very good to excellent condition. Comb is supple, not brittle. I can find almost nothing to point to as a flaw. One very small diamond is lost. One tine of the comb is slightly shortened, as if it might have broken a tipi and been restored to a point but 1/4" short (2nd from end, right side of images front-on). Othewise, this is remarkably fine. We did test, before finding the tiny marks, just in case it was white gold. It is sterling silver. Vive la France! It measures a generous 4 3/8" across, and is 2 5/8" tall. Arched to fit the curve of the skull. Just stunning!