Victorian era Green Paste Earrings

Victorian era green paste earring, in 15k gold. Once elements of a larger piece, later converted into earrings. English in origin. Circa 1850. 


Measures 1.75" in drop length. 


Paste stones are made from highly refractive leaded glass but paste jewels were not considered counterfeit jewelry. It was made to achieve certain decorative effects which were rarely realized with diamonds and other precious stones.  In the absence of the high cost of materials, paste artisan skills were often developed and extended much further than those of diamond workers.  It is said at its peak of popularity, in Paris alone there were 300 jewelers specializing in paste Jewels.  At its best, antique paste is to be compared only with the finest jewelry for sheer artistry and craftsmanship.