Chased Silver Maltese Cross Pendant
dimensions: 4.6cm x 5.3cm, weight: 11g
This solid silver pendant represents an interesting cross-cultural relic. It is in the form of a Maltese Cross, a form that was particularly in vogue in the early part of the nineteenth century in Britain. And yet, it is chased with overtly Sri Lankan motifs. The centre is decorated with the sacred swan (hamsa) motif. And each arm of the cross is chased with delicate stylised orchid motifs typically found on other examples of central Sri Lankan silverwork.
Perhaps this piece was made for the colonial administrator market. But equally, cross-cultural forms were favoured by the indigenous Kandyan nobility.
The pendant is in a fine, stable and wearable condition.
Coomaraswamy, A.K., Mediaeval Sinhalese Art, Pantheon Books, 1956 reprint of the 1908 edition.
UK art market
Inventory no.: 1700
to see other examples of Sri Lankan antiques.