For all the Sturm und Drang of Henry VIII's reign (six wives, two of whom he beheaded), at least he could die in the knowledge that a son survived him—at least for a while (six and a half years). His nine year old son (born of Jane Seymour, who died twelve days after giving birth to the boy) became King Edward VI (reigning 1547-1553). Being so young, Edward's entire reign was "guided" by a Regency Council. Nevertheless, the Boy King had strong opinions, principally that England should drive a stake through the heart of the Catholic Church. He abolished clerical celibacy, banned Latin services, and even tried to leave his crown to his reliably-Protestant cousin (once removed) Lady Jane Grey (rather than either of his half sisters, Mary or Elizabeth). After Edward's death at 15 years of age, Lady Jane Grey did reign for nine days before being deposed (and beheaded) by Mary I—the only child of Henry VIII and his first wife, Queen Catherine of Aragon. Purists argue that Henry's only valid marriage was to his first wife and that subsequent marriages were invalid (given that his original wife was still alive).
The shirt buttons, shown above, were made in the next Edwardian Age (King Edward VII, 1901-1910). Polished, concave Mother-of-Pearl faces are punctuated with a central seed pearl—and the silver mountings are decorated with a swirling green and white enameled bezel. Click on the photo above to learn more about them.
Though our Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed, LEO Design is still alive and well! Please visit our on-line store where we continue to sell Handsome Gifts (www.LEOdesignNYC.com).
We also can be found in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania at The Antique Center of Strabane (www.antiquecenterofstrabane.com).
Or call to arrange to visit our Pittsburgh showroom (by private appointment only). 917-446-4248