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This pair of ornaments were worn from the hair and headdress adjacent to the ears, being too heavy to be suspended from the ears themselves. Each comprises a rounded ‘basket’ from which a ‘flowering tree’ grows and is made from embossed silver-gilt plaques attached to a silver base. Each plaque is inset with a blue glass cabochon.
Such ear ornaments originate from the Islamic people of the Katawaz basin along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border.
Ear ornaments of similar form are illustrated in Ethnic Jewellery (2002, p. 117), Al-Jadir (1981, p. 185), Seiwert (2009, p. 189) and Ghose (2016, p. 188).
The examples here are in excellent condition.
The reverse of each shows high-grade silver with a wonderful patina, and includes a silver hook to aid with the suspension.
Ethnic Jewellery from Africa, Asia and Pacific Islands, Pepin Press, 2002.
Ghose, M. (ed.), Vanishing Beauty: Asian Jewelry and Ritual Objects from the Barbara and David Kipper Collection, Art Institute of Chicago, 2016.
Al-Jadir, S., Arab & Islamic Silver, Stacey International, 1981.
Seiwert, W.D., Jewellery from the Orient: Treasures from the Bir Collection, Arnoldsche Art Publishers, 2009.