The Victorian period (1837 - 1901) was a time for reflecting wealth through jewellery, and Victorian jewellery could be separated out in to three eras, the Romantic (1837-1861), the Grand (1861-1885) and the Aesthetic (1885-1901) periods.
The Romantic period saw a rise in the use of gold, and there was often a theme to jewellery, specifically the natural world. Pearls, coral and onyx were all much used, and people preferred rings, brooches and cameos.
The latter period, the Aesthetic, saw a rise in the power of women, and they preferred to wear their jewellery only for special events. Amethysts, emeralds and opals were popular and smaller jewellery like earrings and brooches were most commonly worn.