Silver Ladakh “ga’u” amulet boxes , India
Old silver Tibetan ga’us boxes, from Ladakh, North India.
The seven ga’u pendants are made of gilded silver inset with turquoise stones. Three of the small turquoises are missing. The pendants were meant to be opened, though some of them are little dented at the back doesn’t open now. Delicate repousée work.
The charm box pendant called ga’u originated in Tibet. This form of jewellery is in wide use throughout the western and eastern sub-Himalayan area by the tribes who follow Buddhism and others who emulate them, though the local term used to designate it varies with the group. The importance attributed by Tibetans and others to the ga’u relates as much to its apotropaic contents as to its form. Handwritten or printed charms, chosen for general or specific purposes according to the individual’s need, are perhaps the most common ga’u content.
The pendants have been recently re-strung with old turquoise Tibetan beads and old carnelian faceted beads.
The gau pendants are 3 cm wide (1,18 in) and 3,5 cm high (1,38 in).
The necklace is adjustable through a knot on the string.
Size of the carnelian beads: 1,4 cm long (0,55 in)
The average length of the two turquoise beads: 1,5 cm long (0,59 in).
Weight: 100 gr.