The martyr king

The Martyr King

A rare 17th century silver heart-shaped memento mori locket for Charles 1st, circa 1649 – 1650. Immediately after the execution of the King mourning jewels were created for his many loyal supporters. The jewels were often small, small enough to be concealed in clothing. The obverse of the locket is engraved with an eye shedding tears, a flaming heart and  a stylised cross. The heart-shape suggests the wearer’s loyalty, as well as undying divine love. The locket measures 2/3 of an inch by 2/3 of an inch. For similar see the V and A Museum and the Royal Collection and the motif of an eye shedding three tears is on a silver mourning heart is in the Museum of London collection.