Precious metals such as Gold and Silver have played a part in our lives since the dawn of civilization. Often associated with the gods and immortality, these unique materials have been symbols of wealth and status as well as having more modern industrial uses.
Pearls have been a symbol of elegance and wealth for hundreds of years and in nearly every culture. Natural pearls are accidentally formed in the interior of a mollusc without human intervention.
Garnets have an interesting history found to date back to the Bronze Age. It was a common medium for the earliest lapidary and glyptic arts. Garnet was believed to be a powerful talisman, a protective gem carried by the earliest travellers. In ancient Egypt, every tomb of status included garnet jewellery to ease the owner’s passage into the afterlife.
The history of Indian jewellery is fascinating: no other culture has such intense reverece for jewellery. From the great Maharajas of the Mogul period to today’s elaborate wedding extravaganzas, India’s treasure trove of jewels have been well preserved.
Jewellery associated with the Chinese culture is synonymous with Jade. For thousands of years though, Jadeite, Nephrite, Serpentine and even Aventurine Quartz were all covered by one Chinese word “Yu”. It was not until the 1800’s that the differences between these materials were identified and Jade was properly categorised!