A Golden Engagement

In the painting “A Goldsmith in His Shop,” a finely dressed couple are eagerly purchasing a wedding ring. The man tenderly wraps his arm around his fiancée, while she happily gestures to the goldsmith who is weighing a ring on a set of scales. The goldsmith, dressed in a rich-red robe, concentrates on his customer’s request as he prepares the ring for sale.  On the right side of the painting is a wall full of the goldsmith’s tools and the fruits of his trade. Each one is meticulously rendered. Elegant pewterware pitchers are displayed on the top shelf. According to the Metropolitan Museum of Art (The Met) website, these were created for the city’s aldermen, who would offer them to important guests. The bottom shelf displays an open purse of seed pearls, and on a cloth are many precious gems alongside a selection of rings displayed much like we’d see them in a …

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