This is a very impressive chatelaine with clip (circa 1860-1890). Although it carries no legible control marks we believe it to be French. The style and care for details you can find here indicate a typically French origin.These kinds of jewels were suspended from the waistband. This chatelaine is complete as the clip is still attached to its short watch chain. A watch could easily be suspended to it.
The clip represents two heraldries surrounded by two golden lions. The heraldries were hand painted with red, blue, green and silver enamel. One represents two silver fish back against a red back. This weapon has been identified as from the Royal family Salm. From the Salm family we know two important branches namely Salm Salm and Salm Hoogstraeten. The Salms were the rulers of a small kingdom in Lotharingen, France, for six, maybe seven, centuries which ended before the French Revolution at the end of the nineteenth century. The origine of the other weapon, in which we recognize a tree set between two red moons with a silver fish underneath, we couldn’t determine.
At the bottom of the clip there is a banner featuring the Italian words: ‘ONOR IN TERRA LO SPIRITO IN CIELO’ which can be translated by ‘Honor on earth, the spirit in the sky’. A crown decorated with pearls, and red and green stones decorates the top of the clip. The watch chain is composed of three separate chains that join at the swivel (the swivel is that little hook where you attach the pocket watch).The center chain is decorated with a round ornament that features a pearl in its center that is surrounded by 8 rose cut diamonds. We don’t have the weight of these diamonds, which is normal in our trade when it comes to rose cuts.
We received a mail by G. de Leusse giving us another determination of this piece, it read: “I saw the jewelry you are selling and I would just comment the heraldics. It is not as you deducted two royal salmons but two pikes. Those heraldics are from the French family “de Leusse”, that is originary from the “Dauphiné”. Pike meaning in Italian “Luce” and the family name “Leusse” is the derived name from Luce (over time). “Onor in terra lo spirito in cielo” is the motto of the Leusse family. The second heraldic is from the French Family “Brochant de Villiers”. Robert de Leusse born on July, 26th 1838 spoused Marcelle Brochant de Villiers. The heraldic of the “Brochant de Villiers” is the following : “d’or à l’olivier arraché de sinople, accosté aux pointes de deux croissants de gueule, soutenue d’une rivière d’azur chargée d’un brochet contourné d’argent”.”
Another mail, sent to us by Mr. Roger de Kerchove de Denterghem, read the following: “Some extra information about the chatelaine: Robert de Leusse was the third son of his father The Count of Leusse, making him the grandchild of the Marquise de Leusse, thus explaining the crown of a French Marquise. Some more detailded information: he was born in 1848 and died in 1838.”
And in another mail, sent to us by Mr. Elliot Nesterman, he wrote: “An addendum about the motto. A more telling translation into English would be, “Honor on Earth, Spirit in Heaven.”