A brightly colored beetle surrounded by a delicate daisy garland is set in a gilt brass frame brooch with wire twist details. From far away, the piece almost looks painted, but upon closer inspection you can see that it is a micromosaic made of pin prick size pieces of glass called tesserae, intricately arranged into shapes like a miniature puzzle. This exquisite insect micromosaic is an Egyptian Revival piece from the mid-19th century during a time when micromosaics were heavily influenced by archaeological finds. The art form originated in Italy where micromosaic jewelry was sold as souvenirs. Because of their beauty and small size they became popular gifts and travel mementos for those on the Grand Tour, an educational trip mostly taken by young men finishing their studies. It is a fantastic little piece that makes you think of far off lands and Indiana Jones worthy adventures.
Good antique condition. There is some unevenness in the patina where the solder has aged darker than the brass. A few pieces of tesserae are missing from the mosaic, but it does not detract from the overall effect (see photos).
The brooch measures 15/16” wide.