Learn about Jet

Jet is a dense black fossilised wood, almost like coal, and very light in weight. It is easy to cut, so carved well.

It became popular in the Victorian era for mourning jewellery, which became fashionable after the death of Queen Victoria's husband Prince Albert in 1861.

The latter part of the Victorian era was characterised by the sentimentality associated with mourning. Black has been the colour for mourning in the Western world since at least the Roman Empire, and as well as jewellery, the period saw the colour used in furniture, clothing and stationery as a mark of respect to the deceased.

Jet was in abundant supply around Whitby in Yorkshire and so jet became the obvious material for this type of jewellery. Some jet was also imported from Spain at the height of its popularity in order to meet demand.

As well as factories producing jet items, carving of the material became a cottage industry, with the fruits of labour displayed in the front window of houses in and around Whitby.

Jet may show marks of the carver's tools unlike Vulcanite, a similar coloured material which was moulded into shape. more...
These items are not for sale and the descriptions, images and prices are for reference purposes only.

A jet bangle, faceted polished jet beads, matte enamel stainless steel mount, hinged bangle.

A pair of French jet Victorian style hinged bangles; internal ovoid diameter 64mm.

A floral hinged bangle in the Victorian style; rose design bangle set with faceted French jet, circumference 162mm

A French jet hinged bangle; set with round and chequerboard French jet. Width. 50 - 12mm. Wt. 55.7g.

A French jet bangle; hinged bangle with central chequerboard French jet set in metal

A French jet set bangle; hinged bangle in black metal

A French jet bangle; hinged bangle in black metal set with French jet

A French jet set bangle; open work hinged bangle in black metal. Wt. 53.5g.

A French jet set bangle; hinged bangle in oxidised metal.

A French jet set bangle; 70mm tapered hinged bangle in black metal.

A Victorian style hinged bangle, set with French jet in oxidised metal. Wt.51.5g

A French jet cuff bangle; hinged metal bangle set with French jet.

A Nouveau style hinged bangle; oxidised metal set with French jet

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