Monthly Archives: July 2017
Franklin Mint is selling the secret to manhood. Or at least copies because the original stays where it is. The secret to manhood as implied by its ads is a ring worn by Silent Film Star Rudolph Valentino. The mint a mail-order firm in Franklin Center, PA is selling copies of the ring for $295.00. “Rudolph Valentino” one magazine ad reads “His name is synonymous with self-assured style”. Off and on the screen. And his taste in jewelry reflected an undeniable confidence in his own masculinity. “Now, for the first time, the ring that he actually wore has been recreated from the original now in the permanent collection of the prestigious Margaret Woodbury Strong Museum, Rochester, NY. In 1967, the ring was purchased for $1000, in an auction in Portland, Maine, and the museum will not say what the piece is worth now. In any case, the ring has never been displayed though in might be included in a 1990 exhibit on American Heros of Pop Culture. The ring is made of hammered platinum with an oval setting of black star sapphire, which has an intaglio of two Greek warriors, one standing and one on a horse It is a huge affair more than 1 inch from front to back, more than 1 inch from side to side, and close to an inch from top to bottom. The copy replaces the platinum with silver and the sapphire with black hermatite. But at least you can get your own copy in any size you want. Museum records say the ring was made in Italy in 1925. Valentino bought it that year and reportedly wore it in three movies “A Sainted Devil” “Cobra” and “The Eagle”. He died in 1926 and the ring was bought by James Perkins a Portland Sea Captain. Strong bought it from Perkins estate which was auctioned when his widow died. In 1967, Margaret Strong bought the ring to go with her Rudolph Valentino Doll.