Silver Anklets / Necklace India
This necklace is made out of two connected anklets that were made in India probably around the 19th century. The Indian subcontinent has a long tradition of innovative jewelry design that stretches back almost five thousand years and reflects the diverse array of cultures and beliefs of the people who live there.
The Mughal style of jewelry had a huge influence on jewelry production throughout India and is one of the more recognized styles outside of the region, though it is only one of many. The Dravidian style, for example, was a popular style in southern India that is much lesser known outside of the country. This is due in part to the fact that only a small fraction of the jewelry produced in this style in the 18th and 19th century survives, because much of it was melted down so the precious metals and gemstones could be reused in new designs. American popular culture and scholarship are only just beginning to recognize the diversity of Indian jewelry design.
This necklace or set of anklets is made up of flexible silver segments that support small bells. The anklets are similar to a pair at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The Mughals restricted the use of gold jewelry to their court and only allowed the royal family and a privileged few to wear gold jewelry on their feet, a sumptuary law probably related to the Hindu respect for gold as a sacred metal. This combination of factors has meant that historically most anklets are made out of silver as opposed to gold.
Circa: 19th century
Dimensions: 18" Opening
Inventory number: JL3585