Etruscan revival jewellery came to popularity during the 1860s and 1870s.
During this time, archeology was beginning to spark the imagination of the world and discoveries were excitedly copied to create fine jewellery and luxury goods. Egyptian and Renaissance revival jewellery began this craze, followed by classical Greek and Etruscan styles.
The Etruscan civilisation thrived on the western coast of Italy from 700-300 BC. Wealthy Etruscans were buried in massive tombs, surrounded by their jewellery and other valuable possessions.
Excavations in Italy, of Pompeii and the Etruscan tombs found beautiful gold treasures and fine pieces of jewellery. The Victorian public was enthralled. The style and gold work was unlike anything that had been seen since the tombs had been closed centuries ago.
The House of Castellani was the most famous Etruscan revival jewellery house. Fortunato Pio Castellani produced many replicas of archeological treasures, claiming he had found the secret to the original ancient techniques. As demand rose, famous jewellers followed in design pieces in this style.
High carat gold and semi-precious stones like lapis, malachite and agates were all characteristic of Etruscan revival jewellery. Gold was worked in new ways, using granulation and closed filigree in order to create beautiful layered designs. Pieces were often created in matching suites of earrings, brooch, pendant and bangle, and delicate detail was added with enamel or pearls.