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Henri Vever: French Jewelry of the Nineteenth Century

Henri Vever, Katherine Purcell


'An indispensable classic reference work … a stunningly beautiful and important text.' Antiques Magazine


Vever’s La Bijouterie Française au XIXem Siècle was first published in France between 1906–08: it has been the bible of all jewelry experts, buyers, sellers, scholars and historians ever since. Only 1,000 copies were originally produced, and it has been out of print for many years, appearing only rarely in the auction houses where it fetches very large sums.

This volume – the first ever complete translation into English – includes over 1400 illustrations: photographs, sketches for jewels and prints from fashion magazines. 136 colour photographs of jewels now in the Musée des Arts Decoratifs are new to this edition.

All the great and now more obscure jewelers are included in the text and illustrations: Alphonse Fouquet, Boucheron, Falize, Froment-Maurice, Cartier, Chaumet, Georges Fouquet, Gaillard, Vever, Lalique, and many many more.

The discussion in the text is not only of the individual jewels and types of jewelry, but also includes many entertaining anecdotes about the jewelers' relations with their customers and with society in general. Being himself a jeweler, Henri Vever was able to talk personally with all the people he writes about (or their followers), so the book has an unusual degree of authority.

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'This is a book that should be on the bookshelf of any serious collector or dealer . . . of these 1300 pages, there is not one without some interesting fact, anecdote or illustration'
Art Review

'Thames & Hudson have done Vever and Purcell proud . . . Now with an extremely readable translation the book has been opened to an even wider audience . . . wholeheartedly recommended'
Decorative Arts Society Newsletter

Product Information

Book Details

Format: Hardback

Size: 27.5 x 19.0 cm

Extent: 1312 pp

Illustrations: 1414

Publication date: 2 July 2001

ISBN: 9780500237847

About the Author

Katherine Purcell is the author of Falize: A Dynasty of Jewelers, also published by Thames & Hudson.

List of Contributors

Evelyne Possémé