An 18th Century ruby and diamond 'Sacred Heart' brooch

An 18th Century ruby and diamond 'Sacred Heart' brooch

Designed as a wounded flaming heart set with rubies, encircled by a wreath, surmounted by a diamond-set cross, Portuguese, circa 1780. Provencence: Formerly in the collection of Dr Joan Evans. Note: The image of the flaming wounded heart of Jesus encircled by a wreath has become a well known motif in Roman Catholicism as a representation of the devotion to The Sacred Heart of Jesus, symbolising the compassionate and sacrificial love Jesus has for humanity. The origins of this date back as early as the 11th century but the form of the devotion recognised today started to take shape in the 16th Century as an evolution of general devotions to Jesus’ five wounds. The importance of the Sacred Heart devotion increased after Jesus appeared to a French Roman Catholic nun, Margaret Mary Alacoque, in a series of revelations during the 1670s. Whilst it had become widely observed throughout Europe, especially in France, and its Mass had been given papal approval in Portugal in 1765, it was not until the late 19th Century, encouraged by letters detailing Sister Mary of the Divine Heart’s interior locutions with Jesus and subsequent theological research, that Pope Leo XIII consecrated the entire world to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and named the feast day of the 23rd of June.

£28,000

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