It would be a thrill to find ONE of these ethnic tribal bracelets but finding a PAIR is truly a rarity. These mid-century silver hollow tribal cuff bracelets are from Balochistan, a province in Pakistan. These were worn in pairs as bracelets and anklets.
These are handmade of high-grade silver (acid tested as sterling). They are engraved with repousse abstract motifs. The crescent shapes are thick with softly ridged edges. The bracelets are ornamented on every side with chased designs that include dots, circles, hatched lines and abstract floral motifs.
The cuffs are hollow but each has small 'bells' inside. One purpose of the tinkling bells was to warn visitors to leave when a woman approached the room. Many cultures also use bells as amulets to ward off evil.
The bracelets are about 2 by 2 inches across the inside. They're 7/8 inch thick and 7/8 inch wide. One weighs 84.9 grams (2.99 oz). The other weighs 90.7 grams (3.19 oz)...for a total of 175.6 (over 6 oz.)...very substantial. They go on my 6 1/4 inch wrist (sideways) with ease and are very comfortable (though it would be hard to sneak up on someone with the bells tinkling). These would probably fit a 6.5 inch wrist as well.
These have a lovely natural unpolished patina...perfect for enjoying the ornate hand work designs. Excellent vintage condition with no notable issues. 1950s Baluchistan Province, Pakistan.
A pair like these (no two are exactly alike because each was handwrought) are featured in the British Museum Online Collection.
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