The buckles, which are inlaid with a spray of brightly coloured hardstone flowers and leaves, were identified by London jeweller Wartski. They have since been acquired for an undisclosed sum by the Gilbert Collection and are currently on loan to the V&A in London.
“Jewels by Neuber are rare and seldom come up for sale,” said Thomas Holman, a director at Wartski. “We know that buttons and buckles are among the articles he made, thanks to an advertisement dated 1786.”
Neuber’s speciality was the creation of distinctive and exquisite hardstone marquetry, a technique known as Zellenmosaik that he employed for his famous gold boxes but also for items of jewellery and smaller objects of vertu.
Using a microscope, Holman was able to examine the buckles in detail alongside one of Neuber’s boxes.
“It revealed many stylistic autographs, such as the delicate veining engraved on the leaves and the use of tinted setting compounds,” he said.
“I was also able to examine the minerals and the engraved decoration.”
The Gilbert Collection, which was formed by Sir Arthur Gilbert and his wife Rosalinde focusing on the decorative arts of the 18th and early 19th centuries, was donated to the nation in 1996 and is now administered by the Gilbert Trust for the Arts.