Featured Old ring

Discussion in 'Jewelry' started by BMRT, Jun 6, 2019.

  1. BMRT

    BMRT Jewelry cherry-picker, lover of silver

    Hello everyone,

    I won a bid for a ring and now it’s arrived. I’m excited to have it but I’m not really sure what I have.

    It’s described as a “Byzantine” ring. It may be bronze but it’s almost completely encased in patina.

    It looks like it was in the ground for a good while before it was found and sold. With this type of object is it better to leave the crust of time on it? Does anyone know of a company or something that specializes in identifying objects like this? A little aside, if it really is old I’m surprised by how small it is. This would be around a size 4. Have fingers gotten larger with time? Thanks in advance.
    C0F9842A-7E70-4369-8C3A-C4DED31D2658.jpeg CBA2FA30-37B4-4B50-A0D3-90042F0B3219.jpeg 28518216-DF7C-4922-A681-1A36E2053099.jpeg
    Any Jewelry, kyratango and Xristina like this.
  2. Hollyblue

    Hollyblue Well-Known Member

    Looks larger than a size 4.
    Christmasjoy likes this.
  3. BMRT

    BMRT Jewelry cherry-picker, lover of silver

    I need to buy a mandrel. It fits where I usually wear my 4’s.

    With no science at all basing this comment, for some reason I had this idea in my head that back in the day people would have thicker fingers.
    Atlantic Jim, kyratango and Xristina like this.
  4. Hollyblue

    Hollyblue Well-Known Member


    Use a MM ruler,most European ring sizes are mm and measure the inside diameter.
  5. Hollyblue

    Hollyblue Well-Known Member

  6. BaseballGames

    BaseballGames Well-Known Member

    We just want to compliment BMRT on her beautifully clean nails. We wish the appraisers on Antiques Roadshow were even half as fastidious about their hands. Eeuuww!
  7. BMRT

    BMRT Jewelry cherry-picker, lover of silver

    :) Thank you!

    Your the second person now on a forum here who has complimented me on them lol.
  8. Bronwen

    Bronwen Well-Known Member

    The style is consistent with other things that turn up as Byzantine bronze rings.


    Better to leave it, if genuine. However, that's the part of this that makes me uncomfortable. There's something odd about the way the incrustation is so thick & even over most of the ring yet so entirely missing in some sections.

    People have become much larger on average.

    Great manicure. :)
  9. BMRT

    BMRT Jewelry cherry-picker, lover of silver

    I’m not sure I could clean it off without destroying it. I’ll probably wear it as is until I find someone to send it to who can look at it for me. I found it odd too... there’s a small corner on the front that looks a little different as if it was partially wiped with something. It’s a different color, at least. 37A5332A-F96D-4FC7-9229-CB58373D786E.jpeg
    kyratango and Bronwen like this.
  10. kyratango

    kyratango Bug jewellery addiction!

    The ring is very interesting, plus you can wear it!:)
    I concur with others for your fabulous manicure and healthy nude nails:joyful:
    Hating false nails and "worn" resin nail "art" which are more and more seen on sellers pics:yuck::facepalm:
    Xristina, Bronwen, bluumz and 3 others like this.
  11. Any Jewelry

    Any Jewelry Well-Known Member

    In antiquity people wore rings on several fingers, pinky rings too.
    I agree. The verdigris looks artificial to me, acid treated. True antique bronzes don't have a surface layer, they have a complex deep layering of patina in different shades. The patina is inside the bronze, if that makes sense.

    BMRT, I know you didn't know exactly what you were buying, so I am not blaming you at all. But I tend to stay away from all these Byzantine, Roman, Viking etc rings, pretty though they are. Even if they are cheap. I just don't want to support that kind of thing. I'd rather buy an honest museum replica, preferably marked as such.
    Imitating and faking is of all ages, but you wouldn't believe the 'antiquity fakes' industry that has come up in the last few decades. Seems like you can't have an auction these days without fake antiquity jewellery and glass.
    Dirty fingernails.:yuck::yuck::yuck: Nailpolish that clashes with the colour of the item in such a way you don't even know what you're looking at, like hot fuchsia nailpolish with salmon coral.:wacky::dead:
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2019
    Xristina, Jivvy, Bronwen and 3 others like this.
  12. BMRT

    BMRT Jewelry cherry-picker, lover of silver

    Good to know! It’s a shame if it’s a common theme to falsify an antiquity.

    I’ll be more skeptical in the future. The last thing I think any buyer wants is to support an industry practice like that. :shifty:
    judy, Xristina, Jivvy and 3 others like this.
  13. gregsglass

    gregsglass Well-Known Member

    I would soak it in olive oil for several weeks to remove all of the verdigris. It does not destroy old coins so it should be safe on your ring. I am glad other people have complimented you on you manicure.
    judy, Xristina, Bronwen and 1 other person like this.
  14. Ownedbybear

    Ownedbybear Well-Known Member

    See, I'd not clean that, even if it were an old one. I love the verdigris look of it.
    judy, Jivvy, Bronwen and 1 other person like this.
  15. Any Jewelry

    Any Jewelry Well-Known Member

    I would leave it. Under the encrusted layer is probably very new looking brass or bronze.
    judy, Jivvy, Bronwen and 3 others like this.
  16. kyratango

    kyratango Bug jewellery addiction!

    AGREE! I'd wear it as it is; if antique, it is part of its history, and if new, you'd be deceived by the look;)
    judy, Jivvy, Bronwen and 2 others like this.
  17. BMRT

    BMRT Jewelry cherry-picker, lover of silver

    In the interest of figuring it out, I decided to slowly remove the crust. I really wanted to know how much of this is embellished and if I made a mistake, hopefully to learn from it and not make a larger (expensive) mistake in the future.
    Bronwen, judy, Jivvy and 3 others like this.
  18. Any Jewelry

    Any Jewelry Well-Known Member

    Buying is always learning, whether you make a mistake or not. We have all been there, and expanded our knowledge and insights that way. That is how we grow as collectors.:)

    Will you show us the result, and maybe progress photos?
    Bronwen, judy, BMRT and 2 others like this.
  19. BMRT

    BMRT Jewelry cherry-picker, lover of silver

  20. BMRT

    BMRT Jewelry cherry-picker, lover of silver

    Progress from yesterday. I submerged the ring in olive oil and gave it a light cleaning with my nylon bristled paint brush.

    I saw some videos online and there is no reason chunks of this stuff should have started coming off already but it did. Slightly surprised but curious, I put it back in the olive oil and ran it over with a cloth off and on for several hours. 6C4BBA05-B675-4AA3-9CC9-5072DC080EBE.jpeg A8F2FC2B-CFA6-4A56-896C-02338B6B639E.jpeg FE0E0D3E-0999-438D-9CC0-7A08F5DE14B7.jpeg DDE43130-69E6-45B7-8C73-F61EEF0E1E48.jpeg

    Around 1030 PM after the little ones had scuttled off to bed, I showed Mr. BMRT what was going on and he suggested if I was going to “go for broke” anyway to use a stronger cleaner. His suggestion was either lemon or vinegar.

    So into lemon juice it went. And here we are today after being buffed by a toothbrush & the lemon: 487873A2-A564-4C01-BA4C-E7856D483165.jpeg DE32E124-416A-4C26-946D-82634C083F6B.jpeg 60D748EA-1956-4665-9C73-A16A457AF969.jpeg I didn’t want to jump to vinegar. My mother used to clean her copper and bronze kitchen things with a Valentina hot sauce solution. I’m going to try that next and see what happens.

    At this point the original look was much more attractive but I still feel it was “helped” by whoever found this ring. Some of the design I’m seeing does not match what was on the patina. I’m thinking it was lightly etched in to make it look nicer based on the best guess on what was clearly visible on the top of the crust.
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