A gorgeous Chinese brooch of glossy red cinnabar, carved into lush leaves and flowers. The edge of the carving is scallop-shaped like a blossom. The cinnabar is set in brass, with a pretty frame of twisted metalwork and an enclosed back. The back of the brooch is marked "CHINA". Circa 1920.
Cinnabar is a toxic mercury sulfide mineral. Because of its bright red color, it has been used as a pigment and carved into jewelry and ornaments in many parts of the world for thousands of years. Is cinnabar dangerous to wear? Mercury is definitely toxic. However, mineral experts argue that the mercury contained in cinnabar is not very “bioavailable”, meaning that it is hard for the mercury in cinnabar to be absorbed into the human body. If you choose to wear cinnabar jewelry it is recommended that you do not heat it, wash in it, or sleep in it.
Details.....The brooch measures 1.77" by 1.33". In Very Good Vintage Condition. You should always expect some wear on antique and vintage jewelry, we consider it part of the charm.