Medieval Jewellery: Affection, Love & Marriage.
The gift giving of Love Tokens. Inspiring Love Token Jewellery in the Bianca Jones Jewellery Collection.
Gold Ring, set with sapphire and a garnet, inscribed ‘due tout mon coer’ (‘with all my heart’)
Your have my heart ‘Mon cure avez’
With all my Heart ‘Due tout mon coer’
Without being parted ‘Sans departier’
Think of Me ‘Pense de moy’
Romance and courtly love provided rich sources for the embellishment and detail of medieval love jewellery. Romances were stories about lovers or heroes, often including tales of courtly love. Gift giving was a major theme where knights and ladies exchanged girdles, brooches and rings as love tokens. Sweet messages of love and affection were often expressed in both imagery and inscriptions on medieval jewellery. Such inscriptions were most commonly written in French, the language of courtly love, a language that was spoken or understood fairly widely by the elite in Medieval Europe.
Image Source: Medieval Jewellery In Europe 1100-1500 – Marian Campbell, V&A Publishing (2009), p. 92.