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The Antique Jewellery Company

The A-Z of Antique Jewellery Symbols

Jewellery is rich with symbolism and can be highly sentimental. Find below some of the recurring symbols or motifs you may spot in our collections and what they represent.
Antique jewellery acorn

Acorn

Fertility, immortality, strength

Antique jewellery anchor

Anchor

Offering guidance and strength. The Archangel Michael carries a sword, while the Archangel Gabriel carries a horn. Crying angels signify death and mourning. Cherubs are often used to represent children

Antique jewellery angels

Angels

Hope, faithfulness

Antique jewellery antlers

Antlers

Strength

Antique jewellery arrow

Arrow

Mortality, love

Antique jewellery axe

Axe

Duty (especially military)

Antique jewellery bear

Bear

Strength, guardian of the family

Antique jewellery bee

Bee

Organisation, efficiency, community spirit

Antique jewellery bells

Bells

Friendship over confrontation; if the bell rings it is believed to ward off evil spirits

Antique jewellery birds claw

Birds claw

Thinking / praying for you

Antique jewellery buckle

Buckle

Protection, authority, victory

Antique jewellery butterfly

Butterfly

The soul. The three stages in a butterflies life cycle also takes on a religious meaning; the life of a caterpillar, death represented by a chrysalis and rebirth as a butterfly

Antique jewellery clasped hands

Clasped hands

Friendship

Antique jewellery coral

Coral

Protection from evil, especialy when worn by children

Antique jewellery crescen

Crescent

Female spirituality, moon Goddess, glory

Antique jewellery cross

Cross

Religion, Christian faith

Antique jewellery crown

Crown

Sovereign, authority, victory

Antique jewellery crown on heart

Crown on heart

‘Ruler of my heart’

Antique jewellery dagger

Dagger

Honour, justice

Antique jewellery dogs

Dogs

Loyalty

Antique jewellery dove

Dove

Peace, Christain faith, Holy Spirit. Sometimes has an olive spring in its beak meaning hope

Antique jewellery eagle

Eagle

Noble, strength, wisdom, courage, power

Antique jewellery eye

Eye

Protection

Antique jewellery faith hope and charity

Faith, Hope & Charity

Symbolised by an anchor, heart and cross

Antique jewellery feathers

Feathers

Obedience

Antique jewellery fish

Fish

Unity with Christ, Christian faith, generosity

Antique jewellery flowers

Flowers

See bottom of page for list of meanings

Antique jewellery birds

Flying birds

The soul

Antique jewellery griffin

Griffin

Bravery, vigilance

Antique jewellery hand

Hand

Friendship, sweetheart, for a loved one (male)

Antique jewellery harp

Harp

Heavenly worship, a bridge between heaven and earth. Also used to represent Ireland

Antique jewellery hear

Heart

Love, passion, charity. A crown on the heart symbolises ‘ruler of my heart’. A flaming heart means ‘passionate love’

Antique jewellery horseshoe

Horseshoe

Good luck, protection from evil spirits

Antique jewellery keys

Keys

Guardian, authority. To enter somewhere, ie. heaven or your heart

Antique jewellery laurel leaves

Laurel leaves

Triumph, peace

Antique jewellery lizard

Lizard

Surviving love (lizards were once believed to be fire-proof!)

Antique jewellery owl

Owl

Vigilance, wisdom

Antique jewellery peacock

Peacock

Immortal, beauty, knowledge

Antique jewellery pearls

Pearls

Teardrops

Antique jewellery phoenix

Phoenix

To rise again, re-birth

Antique jewellery shield

Shield

To defend

Antique jewellery skull

Skull

Death, mortality

Antique jewellery snail

Snail

To persevere

Antique jewellery snake

Snake

Everlasting love, wisdom

Antique jewellery spider

Spider

Wisdom, hard work recognised, prudent

Antique jewellery stag

Stag

Harmony, will fight if needed, honour

Antique jewellery star

Star

Spirit, guidence

Antique jewellery sword

Sword

Honour and protect, crossed swords may indicate death on the battlefield

Antique jewellery sun

Sun

Power, glory, life giving, male God

Antique jewellery urn

Urn

Mourning, death – particularly for older adults

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