Ancient Carnelian and Lapis Lazuli with Carnelian Spearpoint Pendants
Lapis Lazuli, Carnelian, 20k gold
The necklace is 21 inches (53.3 cm) in length. The necklace weighs 19.8 gm.
A necklace of forty-eight lapis lazuli beads alternating with thirty-five carnelian beads. Seventeen of the carnelian beads are drop pendants that taper to a point. The remaining eighteen carnelian beads are 8 mm -10 mm in length, slightly tapered on each end, with a triangular cross section and a width of around 3 mm. The drill hole diameter is 1mm. There are seventy granulated gold beads that separate the carnelian beads from the lapis beads. These and the beading tips and clasp are 20k gold. The pendants vary in length from 1.7 cm to 1.05 cm and graduate in size towards the back of the necklace. They are 2.5 mm- 3 mm in width at the top of each pendant and have a square or diamond shaped cross section. Most of them have been cut with the orange color at the top which fades to a clear quartz at the point. This combined with the long thin profile of the pendants gives an impression of delicacy. So that the spacing between the pendants gradually lessens as the pendants shorten, there are two lapis beads between each of the pendants for the most part, so that the distances can be precisely adjusted by selecting the right combination of two lapis beads. The lapis beads are cylindrical tubes varying in length from 8.5 mm to 4 mm at the back of the necklace. The width of the lapis beads is 3 mm – 3.5 mm. The diameter of the drill holes is 2 mm. The beads come from the Swat Valley in what is now northern Pakistan. Based on the diameters of the drill holes and other characteristics, it is estimated that the beads are around 2,000 years old.