A full parure is most typically comprised of a brooch, a ring, a bracelet, a pair of earrings and a necklace but can get quite intricate and, in the case of those worn by royalty, include up to as many as sixteen pieces such as rings, buttons, tiaras, diadems, stomachers, aigrettes and sevignes.
Parures became fashionable in the late 1600s when elegant evening salons became popular and jewels were made to complement elaborate formal dresses and signify one’s wealth and prestige. Louis XIV, well known for his extravagant entertainments, had two complete diamond parures to decorate his justaucorps and sparkle in the evening candlelight.
Georgian Gold Parure with Fitted Box.
Photo Courtesy of Christie’s.
Although generally associated with diamonds and other gemstones, parures have always been fashioned from a wealth of materials and lovely examples exist using popular materials and styles of different periods such as carved coral and cameos.
Late Georgian-Early Victorian Chrysoberyl Gold Filigree Parure.
- Evans, Joan. A History of Jewellery: Boston, Massachusetts: Boston Book and Art Publisher,1970.