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Chinese Silver Carved Amethyst Bracelet

This early amethyst carving of melons, flowers and a badger … symbols associated with marriage … is a work of art by a master craftsman.

CLICK TO ENLARGE Amethyst is a member of the quartz family of gemstones so it has a crystal structure… in the West, amethysts are usually seen faceted. It is very rare to see all this open work carving in a piece of quartz (which shatters so easily) …so it would require a VERY skilled carver!

The first time that I showed this bracelet to my gemologist Ralph Schroetter, he said “three artists: a carver, a silversmith and an enameller… between them, many hours of work … how does one put a value on that?”

CLICK TO ENLARGE

CLICK TO ENLARGE The carving itself is probably Qing Dynasty… after 1911 many Qing ornaments were reworked for sale to Western markets. It is really a rare treasure – the only one of the ‘big bracelets’ set with amethyst I have ever seen.

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One Comment

  1. Barbara Garwood
    Posted June 17, 2010 at 7:31 pm | Permalink

    I appreciate your commentary! I have been working with the last group of artisans of this jewelry for 17 years. I am preserving the craft while re-designing the art. Please take a look at my designs at my cyber gallery. I’d like your feedback. If you google my name you will see more information about my work and You Tube videos of me talking about my love of this Chinese silver work.

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