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Ornament

Ornament

  • Place of origin:

    India (made)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Pale greenish grey nephrite jade, fashioned pierced and engraved using abrasives and abrasive-charged tools.

  • Museum number:

    617-1874

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This ornament has been fashioned in nephrite jade and carved and pierced on one face only, suggesting that it was to be mounted or otherwise displayed from one side only. Its date and place of origin are uncertain.

Physical description

An elongated jewellery ornament fashioned in pale greenish grey nephrite jade, with a generally flat back face apart from a slightly rounding towards one edge. It has been pierced as flowers and foliage in a vase on a stand and the front face has been carved and engraved to give further detail to the design.

Place of Origin

India (made)

Materials and Techniques

Pale greenish grey nephrite jade, fashioned pierced and engraved using abrasives and abrasive-charged tools.

Dimensions

Length: 46.75 mm, Width: 11.9 to 19.8 mm, Thickness: 4.0 mm

Object history note

This ornament was acquired by William Tayler during his time in India (1829-1867). He subsequently sold it to the South Kensington Museum (later renamed the Victoria & Albert Museum) in 1874 for the sum of £2-0-0.

William Tayler was educated in England at Charterhouse and also spent a term at Christ Church, Oxford. He entered service with the East India Company on 30th April 1829, arriving in India in October of the same year. He held various posts in Bengal and was appointed Commissioner of Patna in 1855. During his service, he was able to acquire many objects, including hardstones, relating to the customs and religions of India as well as objects from other parts of South Asia.
He was criticised for his handling of the uprisings in Northern India and was moved to a lesser post before being suspended, ultimately resigning on 29th March 1859. He then practised as an advocate in the law courts of Bengal before returning to England in 1867.
He wrote a book about his experiences, entitled Thirty-eight Years in India, in which he states that "After my return to England, circumstances induced me, though with great reluctance, to part with the collection which is now in the South Kensington Museum".

Descriptive line

A jewellery ornament, carved and pierced as flowers in a vase, pale greenish grey nephrite jade, India

Materials

Nephrite

Categories

Gemstones; Hardstone; Jewellery

Collection

South & South East Asia Collection

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