2371

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Naga Ivory Bracelet (Akahaghi)

Naga People, India & Burma
19th century

width: 4.2cm, outside widest diameter: 9.8cm, inside widest diameter: 6.8cm, weight: 271g

Sold

Provenance

private collection, UK

Bracelets (or more accurately, armlets) such as this example were worn by Naga men, usually above the elbow. It is fashioned from an ivory tusk cross-section.Traditionally, such armlets were worn to indicate success in head-taking. They were the most highly valued of Naga ornaments; only warriors were entitled to wear them (Untracht, 1997, p. 60)

The example here has a flat interior surace but the outer sides are gently concave. The armlet overall has a wonderful golden patina. It is in perfect condition.

See Jacobs (1990, p. 268-9), Untracht (1997, p. 60), and Shilu (2003, p. 25) for similar examples.

References

Borel, F., The Splendour of Ethnic Jewelry: From the Colette and Jean-Pierre Ghysels Collection, Thames & Hudson, 1994.

Jacobs, J., The Nagas: Hill Peoples of Northeast India, Thames & Hudson, 1990.

Shilu, A., Naga Tribal Adornment: Signatures of Status and Self, The Bead Museum, Washington, 2003.

Untracht, O., Traditional Jewelry of India, Thames & Hudson, 1997.

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