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Rare Gold & Ruby-Inlaid Mughal Pale Green Nephrite Sword Belt Loop
North India
18th century

height: 7.7cm, width: 3.5cm, thickness: 1.6cm, weight: 42g

This rare Mughal sword loop belt is made of pale green nephrite probably sourced from the mines of northern Burma. It is possibly unique; it is the only
example of which we are aware.

It is of typical sword belt loop form but has been well carved with a feline head that has eyes of rubies in gold box settings.

Mughal Indian carved jade and nephrite was imported into China in large quantities where it was favoured by the Qing court and by wealthy Chinese
merchants and other government officials who collected it and gave it to one another as gifts. As a consequence a large amount of Mughal jade and nephrite
is in the Imperial Collection that is now in the National Palace Museum in Taipei.

The loop here would have been the perfect accompaniment to a jade hilted dagger which could have been suspended from it.

It is in fine condition without losses, chips or repairs.

References:
Teng, S.P.,
Exquisite Beauty: Islamic Jades, National Palace Museum, 2012.

Provenance: private collection, UK.

Inventory no.: 5049

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