Enquiry about object: 9518

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    Ladakh Twelve-Strand Coral, Turquoise & Silver Bead Necklace (Ultik)

    Ladakh, Himalayan India
    19th century

    circumference: 57cm, length of central band: 6.2cm, weight: 314g

    Available Enquire


    UK art market

    This very fine crescent-form necklace is from Ladakh in northern India in the foothills of the Himalayas, or from an adjacent area. It comprises hundreds of barrel-shaped, natural, red coral beads as well as hundreds of small spherical silver beads, plus 24 silver beads shaped like small ribbed fruits.

    The bead strands are threaded through a central gilded or low-carat gold band or rib inlaid with tiny turquoise chips against a black-pitch background. The strands terminate at each end with a silver spacer and then a triangular array of silver beads.

    The necklace closes with a silver chain and a ‘S’-shaped loop and hook catch inset on both sides with oval-shaped coral cabochons.

    A related ultik necklace is illustrated in Untracht (1997, p. 154). Another is in Borel (1994, p. 162). A related example attributed to Ladakh with coral beads and a similar ‘S’ hook closing mechanism comprised lot 593 of Sotheby’s ‘Himalayan, Indian & South-East Asian Works of Art’, London, October 21, 1993.

    This is fine and wearable necklace with genuine age and wear.


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

    Saraf, D.N., Arts and Crafts Jammu and Kashmir: Land, People, Culture, Abhinav Publications, 1987.

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

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