Whitby Jet is an intense hard black substance, closely allied to coal, and very light in weight, and good for carving. It is the fossilized wood of an ancient tree, similar to our present-day Araucaria or Monkey-puzzle tree. These flourished in the Jurassic Period about 180 million years ago. When the trees died, they fell into rivers, and were swept down into the sea, where they lay on the Ocean floor for millions of years.
This occurred mainly on the East coast of England, and Whitby became the World centre for Jet.
The Romans called Jet ‘Black Amber’.
When Prince Albert died in 1861, Queen Victoria entered a long period of mourning, during which time only Carved Jet Jewellery was allowed to be worn in Court. The people followed Court Fashion.
This did not mean that they wished to be dowdy. On the contrary, they were very elegant and wore a great deal of Jewellery, which is available to you for purchase, now!