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Large 15th C. Thai Chon Buri Alabaster Cuffed Bracelet

Southeast Asia, Thailand, Chon Buri Province, Khok Phanom Di culture, Bronze Age, Mortuary Phase 5, ca. 1650 BCE to 1600 CE. A large cuff bracelet of a discoid form, hand-carved from a creamy-beige alabaster, with a wide body and a raised interior cuff. The cuff projects outwards on both sides, and the exterior rim is smooth save for some encrustations. The ancient people of Khok Phanom Di were a group of hunter-gatherers that originally inhabited the land around 2000 BCE. Bracelets like this example held a ceremonial significance as a symbol of power and prestige. Though their use by the living is uncertain, numerous archaeological excavations have unearthed bodies adorned in dozens of similar bracelets along with ivory bangles, shell carvings, and stone beads. Alabaster adornments were some of the most important and beautiful types of jewelry in ancient Thailand, and this example is of no exception! Custom museum-quality display stand included. Size: 7.25" W (18.4 cm); 8.25" H (21 cm) on included custom stand.

For examples of bodies at Khok Phanom Di wearing similar bracelets, please see: Higham, Charles. "Early Cultures of Mainland Southeast Asia." Amarin Printing and Publishing Public Co., Ltd., Thailand, 2002, pp. 69-70, 72, 77.

Condition: Surface wear and abrasions commensurate with age, very minor nicks to exterior and interior rims, and roughness across most surfaces, otherwise intact and excellent. Great earthen deposits, encrustations, and root marks throughout. Old inventory labels on stand.

Provenance: private East Coast, USA collection; ex-Joe Gerena Fine Art, New York, New York, USA, 1990s

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