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About Luckenbooth

A History of Luckenbooth Jewellery

A History of Luckenbooth Jewellery

During the sixteenth to eighteenth centuries there were two main styles of brooches - firstly, the ring brooch, often with incised decoration, and used to fasten plaids by both men and women. Secondly, there were heart shaped brooches, often given at weddings and engagements as tokens of love and esteem. From the eighteenth century onwards small plain heart shaped brooches were worn as charms to ward off evil spirits, the evil eye, or the attention of sithean (the fairies). Larger double heart shaped together were known as lukenbooths. The name may have come from the lukenbooths or locked booth in the High Street in Edinburgh where many jewellers were situated. Some towns developed their own styles - see the Phillips Scottish Sale catalogues - they describe the Inverness "double spectacle" pattern of luckenbooths. From 1850 onwards, heart shapes were placed end to end, with zig zag forming the initial M in the middle. With thistle fleur de lys, these came to be called Mary Brooches or even Queen Mary Brooches.

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