Pince Nez Hard Bridge Spectacles
A pair of antique Pince-Nez (French meaning ‘pinch nose’) reading spectacles c1900. The word pince-nez means: 'pinching the nose' and these were a nineteenth century innovation whereby the glasses had a spring clip to retain them in place under their own tension, an alternative to spectacles with earpieces or lorgnettes which required the wearer to hold them in place.
These pince-nez are a type known as the ‘hard bridge’ and possess a solid bridge piece moulded to fit the bridge of the nose. This type of ‘pince nez’ was also known as ‘the fingerpiece’ as it only took two fingers to place these on the nose and squeeze them into position. Two spring loaded clips keep the spectacles in place and they fit well and are very comfortable.
Pince Nez spectacles were in wide use from the 1820s to the 1940s and were available in a variety of styles.
This pair has an ear-piece attached to the glasses with a chain which would loop around the ear. When not needed, the spectacles could hang from the chain attached to the ear. They are likely made from gold although I haven’t tested them and they are marked ‘Fits-U5’ on the bridge. They are in good condition, although the lenses have some scratching. There is a tiny knot in the chain where it meets the glass. It appears that the lenses are not particularly strong, so perhaps these were used as a fashion accessory rather than as a functional item. These do not have a box.
A wonderful set of spectacles for display or to add to a collection.
Product Code : 1473
Weight : 0.01kg