Sigmund Freud, the father of psychoanalysis, was also a keen collector of antiquities.
On the 3rd December 1933, he presented this pin to his daughter Anna, also a psychoanalyst, who was 38 at the time.
About 10cm long, it is made of gold and jade and features three skinny dragons.
An accompanying note reads:
‘Chinese jewellery, (previous century) both plates connected by a needle can be parted and used separately. The ornamentation is fine gold. Love Papa’
According to the Freud Museum in London, the pin was not an everyday fashion accessory.
I won’t read too much into the significance of the item.
It’s tempting to say something trite and predictable like ‘Freud gave his daughter this pin to symbolise the pinning together of psychoanalytic generations’ or ‘The dragon represents the threat of criticism’ but not everything lugs around the weight of symbolism.
I’d put money on the fact that he just liked it and thought his daughter might too.
It lives on display in the home Sigmund Freud’s study in Hampstead with his collection of 2,000 curiosities and the famous couch.
20 Maresfield Gardens