Sunday, March 9, 2014

Unusual Artifacts: An Italian Coral Amulet, c. 1600

Carved Coral Amulet
Italy, Seventeenth Century
The Victoria & Albert Museum

A carved coral amulet, this jewel was made in Italy around 1600 and was intended as a baby gift. Mounted in enameled gold filigree, the piece is carved with a bird meant to protect the child from harm. 

The amulet could have been suspended from a ribbon over the cradle or, perhaps, hung from a rattle.

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