Vintage Medallion: Afghanistan, Large Carved Carnelian Pendant, Item JE16
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Vintage Medallion: Afghanistan, Large Carved Carnelian Pendant, Item JE16


Afghan Tribal Arts has been importing from Afghanistan and the region since the 1980’s. The focus is on vintage textiles and tribal jewelry as well as new gemstone beads made for jewelry designers. Clicking on the Shop on Etsy button will take you to our shop there where you can see what is currently in stock.


Look at the heavily textured metalwork surrounding this carved carnelian pendant! The pendant is thick and heavy. Oxidation on the silver contrasts with the raised shapes, adding depth to the design.

The central stone is engraved with an antelope with wings and markings, and is set on top of the pendant with a plain bezel. The stone is polished and has a soft finish. The pendant is hollow, but the back is closed. The slide on this pendant is large enough for a leather cord or chain.

The front and back side show signs of age and wear, but the pendant is in good condition.

The Pashtun are the largest ethnic majority of Afghanistan and this is one of their jewelry samples. Like their needlework, they are drawn to organic shapes that reflect nature. Islam forbids using animal or people in their designs, one more sign that this was probably made by a tribal group in a remote area. The Kuchi, for example, sometimes incorporate animal motifs in their pieces. As nomads, they have often lived outside the norms of educated urban Muslims.

Estimated age: 1970’s

Diameter: 2 3/4″ (7 cm)
Thickness: 5/8″ (1.25 cm)

Use the zoom option to see larger images.

Afghanistan has been at the heart of the crossroads for the Silk Road for centuries. Nomads and generations of ethnic groups have thrived on trade and beautiful handicraft skills. Textiles, embroidery and carpet weaving continue to represent a plethora of skills that extend on into metal work, wood work, and ceramics. Designs reflect both the beauty of nature and life of spirit in choice of colors and fluidity of the design.

Afghan Tribal Arts has been working with Afghan artists for more than 20 years. Handcarved semi-precious beads are the core focus of the business, but we also have a huge inventory of old and new textiles, carvings and metal work. Visit our shop here on Etsy to see our beautiful treasures!

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Read about Afghan Tribal Arts:

Afghan Tribal Arts

I have been importing from Central Asia since the 1980’s. Afghan Tribal Arts focuses on hand carved gemstones, beads, tribal jewelry, vintage textiles and nomadic carpets. We have a huge inventory of handmade crafts from around the world.

Our gallery is at 626 Broadway in Paducah, Kentucky, USA. We have a nice selection of beads and smaller items on Etsy: Visit us!

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The products you see here are examples of what we have sold in the past. Let us know what you are looking for and we will work with you.  We have lots of photos of our gallery on our Facebook page and you can look through them and contact us if you see something you want to know more about.

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