6342

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Hindu Pilgrim’s Silver Amulet Pendant Necklace (Chhedi ka Jantar)

Rajasthan, India
19th-early 20th century

dimension of amulet: 6.8cm x 7cm, weight: 129g

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Provenance

UK art market

This beautiful and wearable amulet pendant of high-grade silver is suspended on what is probably an original multi-strand, orange and black yarn necklace. It is from Rajasthan and dates to the early 20th century or before.

It encloses a coloured image of an elegant female deity, probably Sita, Parvati or Radha framed by the silver in Rajput-style cusped arches, and beneath a thin sheet of glass.

The amulet box is of silver that has been chased on the front with acanthus leaf motifs and originally, most probably two silver ‘columns’ that extended over the glass and enclosed picture.

Five eyelets at the top allow for suspension.  Multiple silver spherical dangles (gajre) are suspended in tightly-packed formation from the sides and the lower edge.

The reverse of the amulet is enclosed with plain sheet silver.

Such an amulet most probably was acquired from the environs of a temple by a pilgrim and worn thereafter as a keepsake.

A related example is illustrated in Untracht (1997, p. 131).

The piece has splendid patina; its contours have been worn smooth by wear, age and handling. Other than wear and some probable loss to the silver columns over the painting, the amulet is in fine condition. It is very wearable.

References

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

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