Comments for Gold Signet Ring - Expert Required

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Bizarre Teatime Tales
by: Daring P

Sometimes the oddest things are true. A 22 carat ring with the initials of my grandpa and his wife. He was the last in the line of generations of jewelers and clockmakers. The bird I believe to be a Jay, possibly a hint of his surname initial. The T and the P I get but the G makes no sense apart from in Tea his favourite cuppa was PG.

The "Bird" is a Gryphon
by: Clara Gamache

This is no doubt a part of or possibly the whole of your family crest. If you can trace the ring back to the original owner and then look up your family name in Burke's Title and Peerage you may actually find a copy of your family crest in that book. Most large libraries have this book or books or you can usually do an interlibrary loan to get a copy.

A Gryphon was a mythological creature with the head and wings of an eagle but the body of a lion. Since I cannot see this crest too clearly it's possible I am not correct but that is what it looks like to me.

Good Luck!

The Gold of Royalty
by: Anonymous

Since 1923 the Royal family have been wearing wedding rings crafted from a single nugget of Clogau gold extracted from the Clogau St. David's Gold Mine.

The tradition was founded by Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother (Lady Elizabeth in 1923) on her marriage to King George VI (then Duke of York) on April 26th, 1923. Her Majesty's wedding ring was fashioned from the Clogau gold nugget owned, at the time, by a Mr. Bartholomew. The same nugget was later used by the famous designer W. J. L. Bertollé to fashion the ring that The Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh gave to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II at their wedding in Westminster Abbey on 20th November, 1947.

The tradition continues to this day. Other members of the Royal Family that have worn pure Clogau Welsh gold wedding rings include Princess Margaret The Countess of Snowdon (1960), Princess Anne The Princess Royal (1973), Diana The Princess of Wales (1981), Prince Charles (1981) and most recently Their Royal Highnesses The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall (2005).


Clogau Gold at 13th September 2011.

22kt gold - is it preferable?
by: bluemlein

aren't you being a bit silly with the "English royalty prefers 22kt gold for several generations" statement?

most of the world outside europe and north america prefers higher karat gold, because in most of the rest of the world gold was, and is, primarily a portable asset, so the higher the kt the greater the portable wealth.

i am always fascinated by the slavish hunger for royalty expressed in some areas. that's what your ancestors wanted to escape when they sailed across the atlantic in the antique equivalent of rust buckets.

and no, 22kt is not good because it is easier to carve; the higher the kt the softer the metal. or did you think that those scenes of untrusting middlemen biting down on "gold" coins were sneaked into the movies by a covert clique of patient-hungry dentists?

the softer the gold, the faster it loses its edge, so this ring would have been about bragging rights more than utility.

as for hallmarks, they are not there, at least, not the ones that ought to be there. verdict: colonial or north american with pseudo hallmarks aping the english. but because they didn't have the poincons, they are not official british hallmarks and you would not be able to sell this in the UK (and euro zone) if you had a jewellery store.

by: TLC

Greetings from Florida
I know what it is like to have lost a family history and I believe the guess that it is French Canadian is way off so I thought I would give it a try...

First clue is 22 carat gold has been prefered by English royalty for wedding bands for several generations. Although a softer gold, it may have been 22 carat in order to a match to a wedding band and to keep tradition in that it may have been considered to be an important ring. It is easier to carve the softer gold. It also appears to be carved in reverse as a personal seal.

My guess is the ring might be of that of the Admiral Sir Robert Howe Bromley, 3rd Bt. Born on 28 November 1778 at East Stoke, Nottinghamshire, England. I would start with this info and seek further verification. I think it is close.

Reference: A Genealogical and Heraldic Dictionary of the Peerage and Baronetage of the British Empire(by Henry Colburn, 1880), Vol 42, Part 1, page 158.
Sir Robert-Howe Bromley, d 08JULY1857.
Creation: 31OCT1757.
Motto: Pensez fort.
Arms: Quarterly, per fesse, indented, gu. and or.
Crest: a pheasant, sitting, ppr.
Seat: Stoke Hall, Newark, Notts.
Club: Arthur's.

Also see photo of an earlier and similar Bromley crest pg 157.
Sir Robert Howe Bromley was the son of Sir George Pauncote-Bromley, 2nd Bt. and Hon. Esther Curzon. He married Anne Wilson, daughter of Daniel Wilson and Sarah Harper, on 8 June 1812. He died on 8 July 1857 at age 78 at East Stoke, Nottinghamshire, England.

Admiral Sir Robert Howe Bromley, 3rd Bt. was commissioned in 1791, in the service of the Royal Navy. He succeeded to the title of 3rd Baronet Smith, of East Stoke, co. Nottingham [G.B., 1757] on 17 August 1808. He held the office of Sheriff of Nottinghamshire from 1816 to 1817. He gained the rank of Vice-Admiral of the Red in 1848. He gained the rank of Vice-Admiral of the Blue in 1851. He gained the rank of Vice-Admiral of the White in 1854.

Other references:
Charles Mosley, editor, Burke's Peerage, Baronetage & Knightage, 107th edition, 3 volumes (Wilmington, Delaware, U.S.A.: Burke's Peerage(Genealogical Books) Ltd, 2003), volume 1, page 519. Hereinafter cited as Burke's Peerage and Baronetage, 107th edition.
George Edward Cokayne, editor, The Complete Baronetage, 5 volumes (no date (c. 1900); reprint, Gloucester, U.K.: Alan Sutton Publishing, 1983), volume V, page 108. Hereinafter cited as The Complete Baronetage.
George Edward Cokayne, The Complete Baronetage, volume V, page 109.

Good Luck, TLC

Ring photo??
by: Anonymous

Where is the photo of the ring? I may be able to help you.

Think Hard
by: Anonymous

Hi all,

OK, I'm on this site because I'm trying to identify a ring I found on the floor in Brussels over New Year but that aside I saw this ring and there's a few things that I want to add to the general discussion.

The Motto is "pensez fort" which literally translates as "Think Hard" in French. (PS the image of the ring outer is back to front).

So, I assume the ring is from a French speaking country - ie: France OR a wild stab in the dark Canada.

I saya Canada as it appears to have a Jay on the crest and Jays are quite the Canadian bird. I say it's a Jay as it has a head crest which is a giveaway but also, overall it looks quite Jay-ish.

So, put this all together and I think it's either a ring made in France for a French person with Canadian connections, A French ring made for a Canadian or a Canadian Ring made for a Canadian.

Either way the Canadian connection is in there somewhere.

BTW I'm no jewellery trainspotter or collector - these are just common sense observations I have made from your images.

Perhaps they will help? Hope so.

by: Anonymous

About all I know is that it does look like a heraldic ring. Pensez meaning "Thought" and Fort meaning "Deep" or "Strong".

I would say it was French as they have here, already said.

I would suppose the initial to be the initials of the name of the owner. And to be honest, it looks hand-carved.

Signet Ring | Fairbairns Book of Crests
by: steve

The marks do not form a British Hallmark, I can tell you that much. However, I'm not really able to tell you what they do mean!

22 would kind of suggest 22ct gold, but it would be extremely unusual to have a signet ring, and a seal ring at that, made of 22ct, due to its wearing properties. Seal rings by their nature got some hard wear and were usually made of 18ct and then later even of 9ct.

with regard to the crest and motto, that is quite easy to trace.
You need to locate a book called "Fairbairns book of crests". It's a great book and will help you id the crest and the motto.
Sorry not to be of more help with the marks though.

Signet Ring Notifications
by: Anonymous


you do get notifications if you set the notifications and ticked the box where it says, "notify me when someone comments on my contribution".

It does seem quite unusual having all the letters, each one, in an individual shield. (not just the date letter)

You might like to try the London Assay Office.

best wishes,

Yvonne Hammouda-Eyre
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Thank you for the information
by: BG

Thanks for the help. I thought I'd have some sort of email notification of comments and never thought to check back! I'm afraid the ring is also not for sale!


if you check the notifications box that returns at the time you
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AJI Support Team

Nice ring and piece of personal history!
by: Robert kracauer

What a beautiful signet ring! You're lucky to have a piece of your family's history that speaks volumes. One can find heraldic sites on line that can at least identify what each image on your ring probably represents. Just do a search with words like heraldry or heraldic concepts etc.
By the way, I'd be very interested in purchasing it if you are interested.. since I do collect and sell and trade signet rings. Or even a trade. But only if you are interested, of course.

Heraldic Signet Rings
by: Harold

Though heraldry is nearly 900 years old, it is still very much in use today...

Googling we discover that Heraldry is the profession, study, or art of devising, granting, and blazoning arms is described as the shorthand of history. The word comes from Anglo-Norman herald, from the Germanic compound - harja-waldaz, "army commander".

Although the antique gem continued in favor as a signet ring to the fifteenth century, with the establishment of heraldry, the armorial signet was adopted by all entitled to bear arms.


Heraldic Ring
by: Pete

As there is no city mark or date mark, difficult to determine maker. This is why date marks are so helpful. The date letter was to establish when the piece was presented to the assay office for testing of the gold or silver content.
Heraldic signet rings go way back in history and have been worn in England from the 14th/15th century. Originally with a badge or crest and later the coat of arms and family crest of the owner.

Heraldic rings from the Elizabethan era from 1558 to 1603 (England's golden age) had the coat of arms engraved on Crystal in the bezel. The "colors" of the arms were painted in the reverse so they would not be wear-off with use.

"Heraldry" is the motto depicted below the "legendary bird". The motto usually, in Latin would be interesting to have translated. If the motto mentions peace, well the heraldic bird is a dove of PEACE, depicted on the family crest.

For a list of legendary birds, click here.

Is it a dove or an eagle? Birds are symbolic.. The griffin is a legendary creature with the body of a lion and the head of an eagle. Traditionally the lion was considered the king of the beasts and the eagle, the king of the birds.

To find the family name and its corresponding family crest, click here.

All the best,
Guru Team

Ornate gold signet ring
by: Rodney

What a handsome gold signet ring indeed! Gold jewelry was something that took people through wars and got people out of countries in times of distress. Gold was the original portable wealth. We do not see a great deal of antique gold signet rings because when gold peaks men's jewelry was the first thing to get melted.

Men's wedding rings went into the melting pot first. You didn't want to take your wife's jewelry and melt that for the money.

It's unusual to see ornate, desirable gold signet rings survive like this. But about the form of this ring. It was custom in Europe, more so than in the United States, to have your family crest engraved or applied to the top of the ring. If it doesn't have the engraving applied, it's called a blank.

I hope another expert might be able to determine the gold hallmarks for you.


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