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[Tidbits] A Necklace to Die For


Her name was Lin Jingxun and she died at the age of nine. She was of
royal blood. She descended from the Sui imperial family. She was
Chinese. And in keeping with the mysterious dichotomies of life…
her necklace was of Persian origin.

The lapis lazuli contained therein however, was from Afghanistan. The
pearls. the red stones. the blue stones. their sources are a mystery.
Still. they had great significance as they, along with the skilled
craftsmanship contained in the necklace’s design depicts many of the
seven treasures of Buddhism. They were symbols of wealth and
happiness. Those two do fit well together. do they not?

I digress for some interesting tangential bits of information
emanating from this era. This was during a time when forgery was
rather frowned upon and anyone caught counterfeiting a gold coin was
considered to be attempting to usurp the government and was therefore
summarily decapitated. It would seem that the allure of decapitation
has not lost favor in today’s world of enlightened barbarism. Do I
see an oxymoron here? Or perhaps just a bloody moron?

And then there were the parties-du-jour which were celebrated in
rather unique fashion. Everyone who was anyone attended… displaying
their treasures and wares. And the person deemed to have the greatest
treasure got to wear a hat and sit on a chair. How quaint. Though
it’s truly not much different today. the only change being that the
person with the greatest treasure would get an extra helping of
smoked salmon on their bagel and then perhaps got to sit in a chair
while it was being held aloft and everyone else pranced around him or
her while dancing their dance. It would appear that the more things
change. the more they remain the same. I know I know. It’s a French
saying. But it is easier in English… n’est-ce pas?

So. to return to the necklace. The craftsmanship heralds back to
jewelry made in the Hellenistic period, the Roman period, the
Parthian period, and the Sasanian west period. To wit for the
technically curious: The loop ends of the necklace, the hooked clasp,
the spherical beads with granulation, and the colored stones in
geometric shapes. all of which hearken back to those different eras.
Your attention is requested to the lapis on top which is carved with
the image of a stag. This is-it is written-a reused Sasanian seal.
This apparent mixture of jewelry styles is probably due-in part-to
the conquests of Alexander The Great. Alex was one helluva fellow.
Just think. Some of the jewelry of today is thanks to the slaughters
of yesterday.

What with what’s going on in the world of the present. one can only
stand in wonderment on the precipice of imagination in order to
envision the works of art soon to be coming down the pike. I am dizzy
with anticipation. I am heady with the intoxicating visions of
jewelry to be. More decapitations I say. More cruelty. More lies.
More disregard for the human condition. for where there is suffering
there is art. and there will then be gold and gemstone masterpieces
galore. Bring it on baby. Jewelers of the world unite and flame your
torches. Greatness is on the nigh and irony. on the forefront.

So who wants to see this young girl’s royal necklace? Hmmm? Go. You
know where. Home page. Scroll down. Left
side. Tidbits. The old wizard. Click.

And there ya have it. That’s it for this week folks.
Catch you all next week.
Benjamin Mark