Fjocice -Croatia Mediterranean Jewellery -2021
One of the most luxurious forms of Dubrovnik traditional jewellery are gold earrings. These are the earrings worn by women from Konavle. They are called fjočice, and women from Konavle wear them with the traditional festive way of dressing on the wedding day and in the first year of marriage. The girls received them just before the wedding, during the second gift-giving, which was called veliko obilježje in Konavle, along with other jewellery that consists of: another type of gold earrings verižice, a brooch ploča pod grlo, a large silver razor with a chain sindžir, a large vest čermica, a large filigree puce pod grlo, seven to fourteen rings, and eight gilded filigree pins for headwear called hondelj.
Fjočice are usually done in 18-carat gold by means of casting and filigree technique. The upper part of a fan-shaped earring is made of a stylized, tied ribbon called fjoka. Sophistication and moderation are emphasized by filigree hanging, double and teardrop pendants. The centre of the fan-shaped earrings and the tops of the teardrop pendants are decorated with flower heads. They are impressively large and the bent and thin gold wire makes a meticulous performance that exudes elegance and sonorous melody.
They are the work of Dubrovnik master goldsmiths during the 19th and 20th centuries. In the mentioned period, Dubrovnik goldsmith workshops were focused only on the production of traditional jewellery for the needs of the increasingly rich village of the Dubrovnik area. Let us recall that Dubrovnik was a large goldsmith’s centre from the 13th to the middle of the 20th century, and, for example, at the beginning of the 16th century, 43 goldsmiths were recorded, mostly of local origin.
Family jewellery was carefully kept in wooden painted boxes called škatulice or in a separate part of the chest kokula or in a chest of drawers called bural. The best pieces of jewellery were worn according to strictly defined rules and on extremely rare occasions. Jewellery was an important part of the family treasure inherited across the generations.