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Demi-parure

 

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Demi-parure

 

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Demi-parure

 

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Demi-parure

 

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Demi-parure

 

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Demi-parure

 

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Demi-parure

 

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Demi-parure

 

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Etui A. Dufour

 

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Etui A. Dufour

 

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Etui A. Dufour

 

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Etui A. Dufour

 

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A parure is a set of matching jewels intended to be worn together. These coordinating sets consist of a comb, a diadem, earrings, a necklace, a brooch, a buckle and bracelets. A demi-parure is a combination of a necklace or brooch and matching earrings or bracelet. In this case it is a brooch, which can be transformed into a pendant, and two matching earrings. The set has been preserved in its original case with the gold stamp of Arthur Dufour, jeweller to Prince Philippe Count of Flanders(1837-1903) and purveyor to the Prince and Princess de Ligne. It is mind-blowing to see the initials of Princess Marie of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen (1845-1912) in the monogram on the case. She was the wife of Prince Philippe of Belgium. In 1893 her jewellery collection was stolen from the palace in Brussels. The demi-parure reflects the fashion of the time. Rich ladies wore hoop dresses made of silk for festive and official occasions which they adorned with a profusion of diamond jewels. With the discovery of diamonds in South Africa, these precious stones were more readily available from the second half of the nineteenth century. This gave a boost to large jewellery houses. With its symmetry, use of bows and floral elements, and the combination of sapphires and natural pearls, the demi-parure calls to mind the jewellery Gustave Baugrand presented at the World Fair in Paris in 1867.