You have 2 more free articles remaining

While the top lot of the day was an impressive late Victorian diamond rivière necklace – sold after several minutes of bidding at £70,000 – pictured above is a gem-set gold Renaissance gimmel ring probably made in Germany in the late 16th century.

Set with a ruby and emerald, the two parts open to reveal white enamel decoration and the engraved words, highlighted with niello, Quod Deus Homo Non Conjunxit Separet, which translates to ‘What God has joined, let no one separate’.

The betrothal ring of the English merchant and financier Sir Thomas Gresham now in the Victoria and Albert Museum assumes a similar design and the same legend.

In a case by SJ Phillips, the W&W example sold for £7500.