Kirsten's Corner

18K Gold and Sterling Silver Beetle Brooch with Rose Cut Diamonds, Onyx, and Ruby


Circa the Edwardian era, this large and impressive Rhinoceros beetle brooch is encrusted with Rose Cut diamonds on an 18k gold and sterling silver body. The insect’s head and antenna are accentuated with patterns of  diamonds in stylized floral shapes. At the center of the head is a large stunning Rose Cut diamond, surrounded by a halo of smaller diamonds, with two ruby cabochons for eyes. The insect’s abdomen is a striking carved moon-shaped onyx that is beautifully fit into the body of the piece. The black of the onyx is offset by a darkened silver patina; the diamonds glisten and pop against it. Six insect legs are made of 18k gold and its feet turn into stylized loops—a design that is repeated throughout the piece. 

The brooch is done with incredible attention to detail. The underside of the brooch reveals a cage-like 18k gold setting for the onyx, as well as detailing on the legs—this is the work of a master. The piece is marked as 18k gold and acid tests as sterling silver. 

There are 89 Rose Cut diamonds in the piece, with a total weight of 2.5 carats. The diamonds range in size from 4.75 mm - 1.5 mm, with the largest diamond in the center of the beetle’s head. The diamonds are J-K-L in color and SI in clarity. The two ruby cabochons measure 2 mm. 

The brooch measures 3 1/2” x 1 1/4” and weighs 42.7 grams. The piece comes in its original antique box. 

This is an excellent statement piece that can be worn on a chain as a unique pendant. It can also be worn as a brooch or scarf pin. Beetles are an ancient symbol representing strength and power, as well as change, transformation, and renewal. 

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