An 18 carat gold chased and engraved ring circa 1840, containing a watercolour portrait of a boy under crystal. The boy’s attire is that of a young midshipman in the British navy – a blue wool single breasted tail coat, stand up patch collar and white stock. Midshipmen, ‘middies’, or ‘young gentlemen’, were officer cadets, drawn from the middle to upper echelons of British society and with good family and some education behind them. They joined the Navy at the ages of 12 to 14. The ring is poignantly engraved to reverse, My Son, no doubt as a mother’s memento of her child as he went off to sea. The ring is size I and 1/2 [US 4 and 1/2]. Charming, immaculate.