Young Girl Before the Mirror (Молодая девушка перед зеркалом). A young girl sits before her dressing table. In front of her is an open book and a necklace. She wears a soft green sarafan and kokoshnik (tiara). The decorated walls indicate the scene takes place in medieval Russia. Vintage Rostov "finift" painted enamel brooch. Beautiful patinated filigree surrounds the piece. Yaroslavl region. 1980's. With a pinback. 1¾". 1 only. Gift boxed.
Painting on enamel appeared in Rostov Veliky (125 miles northwest of Moscow) in the 18th century. The Veliky (i.e., The Great) appended to the town is to distinguish it from Rostov-on-the-Don, which is about 500 miles south of Moscow, and to indicate that it's the older of the two towns. First mentioned in 862 in the Primary Chronicle, and two centuries later joined by Rurik to his Kingdom, it became the seat of the Church.
In the early 20th century, local artisans began creating miniatures on enamel with colorful floral patterns and put into filigree settings and frames. Finift (финифть) painting has many layers and each layer is fired. Finift comes from the Greek “fingitis,” which means, “gleaming.”