This late 1800s Chinese amulet is a puffy silver lock that was used to ward off evil and to bring good luck, fortune, official rank, and long life to the owner. Often, these were given to children as protective talismans.
The lock is ornately chased on each side with Chinese symbols including the seed of life and other Chinese characters.
These locks could be bought at silversmith shops and varied in size and shape. Sometimes Buddhist or Taoist (Daoist) priests tied them with their own hands around the necks of children. We've read that no two locks are the same. Because they were hand made, each one is a little work of art.
This puffy one measures about 1 5/8 by 1 1/4 inches. It's 3/4 inch thick. The bar at the top makes it easy to attach the lock to a chain for a beautiful pendant.
This silver lock tests for 800 to 900 silver. The aged patina is beautiful...too nice to polish. Old and original. It's in excellent condition.
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