Collar (jewelry)

From ArticleWorld

A collar is a decoration for the neck, and is an ancestor to the modern necklace. Collars were made by medieval royalty to display honors given to them, or their status in society. Collars are designed to lie flat against the body rather than to dangle or hang freely.

Sir Thomas More wore a special collar called the Collar of Esses to denote his rank as Lord Chancellor. Many collars are shown in historical paintings of important figures such as Kings. One example of this is the collar worn by King Henry VIII in some of his famous portraits.

Some specific types of collars are the dog collar, chains of office, or ancient massive necklaces worn by either men or women of wealth and rank.

Female royalty has worn dog collars for centuries. Elaborate dog collars were worn during the Edwardian Period. The Queen Alexandra of Denmark, who wore a highly ornamented choker type collar, started this fashion. This collar was encrusted with precious stones, and was designed to cover a scar that the Queen had on her neck. The fashion spread, and portraits of royals wearing dog collars can be seen in portraits painted in this era.

Chains of office were also a type of collar worn by high officials in England and the United Kingdom. These collars are also called livery collars, and contain the insignia of the various types and orders of Knights.

Any massive, close fitting necklace created before the 1500 might also be called a collar. Men or women can wear collars. They also are frequently made of precious metals such as platinum or gold, and are adorned by precious gemstones.