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Most people these days think of flies as annoying, unwanted pests. However, for our Victorian ancestors, these winged insects held a much deeper, spiritual meaning.
Going hand in hand with 19th-century society's fascination with death and memento mori, the fly was often used as a representation of human mortality and spiritual humility.
They also were believed to ward off evil when worn as a talisman, which could be why we see a number of fly motifs, such as this, in jewelry of the era.
On a lighter note, Victorians also believed that the fly symbolized secrets and secret keeping given its ability to silently listen and observe the happenings around them without uttering a word or disturbing a soul. A "fly on the wall," anyone?
This beautiful brooch hails from the aesthetic period of the 1880s, a time when Victorians gave the middle finger to the Industrial Revolution and yearned to return to nature, which included incorporating elements of plants, insects and animals into their everyday lives.
This highly detailed figural leaf is fashioned in sterling silver with remnants of a gold wash. Perched upon the leaf is a 3-dimensional fly with just enough tremble to give it life.
Brooch has its original tube hinge and tube clasp and fastens securely.
Truly a great piece for the nature lover or insect enthusiast in your life.
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