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Burmese silver Cross
Jewelry and Watches
A silver cross pendant with a floral ornament and a reddish orange gemstone in the middle (presumably raw orange Spinel, Padparadscha or Spessartine), on a silver chain
In Burma there are ten traditional arts, or “pans”. Pan tain, or pan htyan, is the art of the silversmith and the goldsmith. It is the second of the ten pans, also known as the ten flowers of Burmese culture. The oldest pieces of fine silver found in Burma were made by the Pyu – Tibeto-Burman people who dominated central and northern Myanmar from the 2nd to the 9th century CE in the middle to late Iron Age. In the Konbaung Dynasty, the supply and demand for fine silver grew rapidly and the “pan tain” art form reached a zenith in the late 19th to early 20th centuries – the Burmese “Silver Age”. Traditionally, Burmese silversmiths preferred anonymity and they seldom marked their work with either their name or an identifiable maker’s mark. A small number of master silversmiths did start to engrave or stamp their name on exceptionally high-quality pieces beginning in the mid to late 19th century. Burmese silver is made today in small workshops in two principal locations – Inle Lake and Sagaing, where this cross could have been hand-crafted. Chinese aluminum is increasingly used as a cheap substitute for authentic Burmese silver. In Burma Buddhism is practiced by 90% of the country's population. The floral symbol on the cross might represent the ingyin, one of the Burmese national flowers. In Burma Ingyin Tree is worshipped, representing the Buddha. The shape of the flower on the pendant resembles the ingyin. Orange in Buddhism is the color of illumination, which can be related to the choice of an orange gemstone for the pendant.
Height: 20, Width: , Depth: ,
Materials: silver, gemstone (presumably raw spinel, padparadscha or spessartine). The gemstone is likely orange spinel. The most valuable spinel colors are red and pink, but the flame orange, though quite rare, is also popular with collectors. Most orange spinel comes from Burma or Tanzania.