An exquisite Edwardian era 14 karat white gold and glass Lorgnette, mounted with a built in bale so that it can be hung from a chain. The lorgnette, or pair of folding spectacles, were the precursor to the opera glasses. They were a popular item fro the distinguished ladies and socialites to own and elegantly display during the 19th Century. The word lorgnette comes from the French word "lorgner ", which means “to ogle” or “to eye furtively”. The lorgnettes were often used by women to stealthily gaze at a gentleman sitting in the theatre, instead of actually watching the stage. This lorgnette is a really wonderful piece, that could be worn as a charm or used for people watching. The eyeglasses open with a easy push of the clip by the bale, revealing a lovely floral design in the center piece nose bridge. Here one can find the 14K marking. The glass pieces are octagonal shaped and mounted nicely onto the white gold. They have no nicks or scratches. Overall the condition of these antique lorgnettes is excellent. They make a very romantic and elegant accessory and even a pair of functioning eye glasses, ready to wear on the chain of your choice. The bale is also almost heart shaped, a nice touch to the lorgnettes. You can have glass replaced for your own prescription, and could also make also a great pair of reading glasses. Open, the lorgnette measures 4 inches and closed it is 2-1/2 inches. Circa 1910.
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