London, South Kensington
13 May 2008
An antique diamond and paste doublet bishop's cross and foiled topaz and diamond ring
The cross set with seven cushion-shaped rock crystal and foiled paste doublets with old brilliant-cut diamond points; the ring with yellow foiled oval cushion cut topaz to a brilliant-cut diamond border, mounted in silver and gold, both circa 1790, cross approximately 10.5 cm. long, ring, finger size - P1/2, in original fitted pink leather case (2)
Bishop Joseph Anton Gall of Linz, Austria (1789-1807)
Shortly before his death, he gave them to his sister and thence by descent.
Joseph Anton Gall was born in 1748 as the fifth of eleven children in Weil, Germany. He read theology and philosophy at the prestigious University of Heidelberg, after which he entered the residences of the ducal bishops in Speyer, where he was made a priest in 1772 for the diocese of Speyer.
In 1788, Emperor Joseph II made Joseph Anton Gall second bishop of the diocese of Linz. He was consecrated and crowned by Pope Pius VI in early 1789.
A selfless religious leader, his humility won him the hearts and respect of the people in his diocese. He died in Linz on 18 June 1807.
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