Attributed to Georg Siebenburgen (German, died 1617) (Jeweler) & Palatine Miklos Esterhazy (Hungarian), Esterhazy Marriage Collar, ca. 1611, Augsburg, Germany. Gold, enamel, rubies, emeralds, pearls, sapphires, stones, other gems or colored glass. L: 18 in. (45.7 cm). The Walters Art Museum

This elegant, jeweled wedding collar (incomplete) was reputedly worn by the scion of a powerful Hungarian noble family allied with the Habsburgs, Palatine Miklos Esterhazy, at his wedding in 1611. The design evokes a stylized flower garland interspersed with references to love and marriage, including right hands clasped around a heart (union based on good faith and love), doves (affection), cornucopias (prosperity), and forget-me-nots (loyalty). Such a piece of ritual jewelry could be valued as a striking symbol of the fundamental importance of marital alliances to the Habsburgs. The associated ornament has two hooks on the back for fastening it to clothing.