Enquiry about object: 8661
Large South Indian Temple Priest’s Anklet (Kal Chilampu)
Irinjalakuda, Kerala, South India 18th-19th century
width: approximately 24cm, length: 22.8cm, depth: 11.2cm, weight: 3,579g
UK art market
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This large and heavy, cast bronze, rigid anklet was worn by a priest or seer-oracle (velichapad) in a temple compound in Kerala.
Cast using the lost-wax method, it has an elliptical shape, is hollow and encases several pellets that rattle when the anklet is moved. The anklet has been cast at the front with a loop with a cobra’s head at the front and surmounted buy an image of Nandi. It is cast with other mystical symbols and is engraved on the interior with several lines of Malayalam script.
A similar example is illustrated in Untracht (1997, p. 271). Another is shown in Jain-Neubauer (200o, p. 50).
The anklet is in fine condition other than for a single, fine hairline crack towards the front of the anklet, but this seems stable and is only apparent on close inspection.
Jain-Neubauer, J., Feet & Footwear in Indian Culture, Bata Shoe Museum/Mapin, 2000.
Untracht, O., Traditional Jewelry of India, Thames & Hudson, 1997.