A repoussé gold marriage Necklace (Tali) South India, early 19th Century
Lot 235
A repoussé gold marriage Necklace (Tali)
South India, early 19th Century
£8,000 - 12,000
US$ 13,000 - 19,000

Lot Details
A repoussé gold marriage Necklace (Tali) South India, early 19th Century A repoussé gold marriage Necklace (Tali) South India, early 19th Century A repoussé gold marriage Necklace (Tali) South India, early 19th Century
A repoussé gold marriage Necklace (Tali)
South India, early 19th Century
comprising twenty-eight oblong gold lac-filled repoussé elements depicting the goddess Lakshmi with a kirtimukha above, with alternate crescent and palmette shaped terminals; the large central boss-shaped tali emblem surmounted with a repoussé image of the goddess Gajalakshmi flanked by elephants, terminating in two similarly decorated rectangular elements and six fluted and granulated bosses, reverse plain gold, on thread
21 cm. length approx.; 146 g.

Footnotes

  • Provenance:
    Private English collection.

    The term tali (sometimes spelled thali) refers to the gold marriage ornament or auspicious amulet placed on the mangalsutram (marriage necklace). Its use is especially common in southern India. The Sanskrit word tali is derived from the vernacular name of the palmyra palm or the large-leafed talipot palm, both commonly found in southern India. Originally it was customary to tie a strip of either of these palm leaves around the neck of a married woman to indicate her married status. The custom and term were transferred to the gold ornament now placed on the mangalsutram.

    In temple sculpture, female deities are often represented wearing a tali bearing an image of the god Ganesha. It has been suggested by Oppi Untracht that south Indian talis bearing representations of gods and goddesses, especially Lakshmi, the goddess of good fortune, are probably inspired by images of adorned deities in temples. (O. Untracht, Traditional Jewellery of India, London, 208, p.168)

    A similar example of a Tali is illustrated in U. Bala Krishan & M.S. Kumar, Indian Jewellery. Dance of the Peacock, Mumbai, 2001, p. 231, ill. 374.
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