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Home > Auctions > 25th May 2021 > Medieval Gold 'The Gift of Loyal Love' Posy Ring

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LOT 0427

GBP (£) 4,000 - 6,000
EUR (€) 4,650 - 6,980
USD ($) 5,610 - 8,420

Bid History: 2   |   Current bid: £3,800

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Bid History: 2   |   Current bid: £3,800

Medieval Gold 'The Gift of Loyal Love' Posy Ring

Mid-late 15th century AD

A superb gold posy ring with band of shallow D-section form, the exterior with alternating diagonal bands of raised pellets and raised panels with incuse lines, these panels appearing to be in a paler gold than the background, between raised beaded circumference edges; the interior engraved with Black Letter 'amour leyell' French inscription for 'Loyal Love'. 5.28 grams, 21.75mm overall, 18.55mm internal diameter (approximate size British Q, USA 8, Europe 17.49, Japan 16) (1"). Very fine condition. A large wearable high status gold treasure find.

Found with the use of a metal detector near Dorchester, West Dorset, UK, on 30 June 2018; recorded as a find of Treasure under the Treasure Act 1996; accompanied by copies of the report for H M Coroner, Treasure Act receipt, Portable Antiquities Scheme report number DOR-6BA717, a letter from the British Museum disclaiming the Crown's interest in the find and an independent specialist report and valuation by graduate gemmologist and jewellery expert Anna Rogers, GIA GG, BA, Gem-A, ref. no. 174167/24/03/2021; this lot has been checked against the Interpol Database of stolen works of art and is accompanied by AIAD certificate number no. 10669-174137.

See Evans, J., English Posies and Posy Rings, OUP, 1931, this inscription is not represented in her lists but providing useful information on the subject; see Oman, C., British Rings, 800-1914, London, 1974, pl.21, A, for similar external ornament on a ring of the same period.

Many medieval rings of this type bearing inscriptions use French words and terms; French is sometimes called 'the language of love' and the ring was most probably a gift from a beloved.