I tend to call a lot of the jewellery from the Gablonz area of Czechoslovakia - Bohemian - which is not strictly speaking correct. That's what we have always called it. However Bohemia actually disappeared after the First World War when the two area were united to form Czechoslovakia. The jewellery area around Gablonz was made up of both Czech and German speakers - although Gablonz was mainly German speaking. The demise of the important jewellery making area is described in Sibylle Jargstorf's book 'Baubles, Buttons and Beads' (Schiffer) - due to the rise of the Reich and the fact that many of them were Jewish. I find dating this jewellery very difficult - due to the fact that it is not that well documented. Also, although jewellery continued to be made in the area in smaller quantities, it is difficult to see what is original, what has been made from old parts - and what has been copied. I cannot always be sure when trying to date pieces!

Copyright © 2010 Gillian Horsup

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