[Tidbits] Bird on a Baroque

Here’s the story as it concerns a Topaz.

Swallow a topaz and your melancholy will be relieved. This makes
perfect sense because the ensuing stomach problems and pains will
leave no room for sadness.

Ah… but there’s more. Place a topaz on your tongue… and your
thirst will be relieved. This is rather wonderful as it precludes the
natural way of doing things… such as drinking water. You come home
late from work one day. Honey, you say. May I have a glass of water?
Here, she says. Have a topaz instead. Mmmm… very satisfying. Of
course… as with all wondrous things… there is a slight wee bit of
a disadvantage to placing a topaz on your tongue and that is that it
is known to diminish your sexual drive. You sure you want me to take
topaz instead of water, you say. Absolutely, she says. I have a
headache. For all things there is a reason. Ain’t science wonderful.

When it came to jewelry… symbolism ranked supreme throughout the
ages. Mary–Queen of Scots–carried a black stone with a covering of
gold in the shape of a pigeon’s egg about her person. This… it was
well acknowledged… was protection against poison. Snakes’ tongues,
sharks’ teeth, fragments of unicorn’s horns… all mounted in gold…
also protected against poison. Today we use products such as
anti-venom and other medications but I very much doubt they are as
effective as the horn of a unicorn mounted in gold would be.

In the middle 1500’s pendants in the form of birds began to make
their appearances on the Spanish scene. Here we had an important
center for goldsmiths which was enriched more than other countries by
the discovery of the Americas. Today some of you may be wearing an
old piece of bejeweled art–in the form of an eagle pendant
perhaps–made in 16th century Spain… for which you owe an eternal
debt to none other than old Christopher Columbus.

I have such a pendant to show you… an old old piece dating back to
16th century Spain. It’s a bird wearing what appears to be a topaz
crown on its head with a baroque pearl body and multi-colored
enameling for its feathers. It hangs on a chain on the end of a hook.
I do not know the purpose of the hook. Is it an eagle? Is it a
thunderbird? Or is it simply the evocation of an ancient jeweler’s

These questions need to be answered before the week is out folks.
Email me your opinions and I will let you know the consensus next
week for first choice.

I have no price for this item. I have no artist’s name. I have only
the image of the item. This for those who may feel a need to know
these things. For you folks I feel overwhelming sadness at the
knowledge that you will be disappointed. But so it goes at times.

For those of you who are new to this thing called Tidbits…may I
direct you to my home page at www.tyler-adam.com where you will
scroll down the left side menu till you get to the area that says
Current Tidbits… and you will get to view a bird of a sort with a
baroque pearl body.

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

Hi Benjamin,

Long ago I saw a book about crowns worn by royalty in distant parts
of the world. I remember very few details other than a gold crown
that came with a set of individual removable ornaments that could be
used for different occasions. The hook was hung in one of several
openings in the crown and the ornament swung in another opening
below. It appeared possible to wear several ornaments at one time all
around the crown or only one.

Could this be the purpose of the hook above your bird?

I’ll be interested to hear other comments.

Mary A
Chief Design Officer
Jewelry for the Journey