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Two Families

She is the last direct link in two family chains. Within her two lines of human history culminate, represented by the combination of two necklaces. Two families sewn together, joined by threads of common DNA, name and place.

One family emerged from the ancient heart of Etruscan Italy. Another family emerged in France, moving into Ireland.  Both families later came to the America’s.  Ebbs and flows of history….family seats and forced migrations, the comforts or torments of religious history, family fortunes gained and lost. The links in these two chains connect her back...and each link returns to her, the unique vessel.

Two chains; one is interrupted by Victorian black jet beads from her family collection. From this hangs a glass bottle-locket.  Inside is a narrow strip of worn cotton fabric. On it is written her genealogy: a chain of family names, births, marriages & deaths, dating from the early 18th century.  The strip has come full circle. The earliest name links with the last, sewn together with a single thread pulled from her great-grandmother's trousseau.  It is a memorial and a reminder...Tempis fugit.

From the chain hangs a tiny angel in a cast frame...a talisman of what was once a strong family faith.  It shows a fragment of Victorian Glass Lantern Slide.  The angel casts a shadowy and uncertain image now.

Another chain is the bubble pendant.  One of the family names derives from the word ‘bubble’, meaning seal or papal bull, introduced to the Romans by the Etruscans.  A round amulet worn like a locket; protection against evil. Worn by a girl until the eve of her wedding day, when she laid it aside with other childish belongings.  This bubble  pendant is made of a vintage and altered brass brooch find. A small silver-plated spoon has been engraved to resemble a pine-cone and wraps the bobble. (Pine cones are a family talisman ; symbol of Cybele the goddess of abundant benefits).  A silver seed hangs, personifying growth.



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