Hand Carved Jade Antique Bi Coin Pendant on Raku Beaded Necklace

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Product Description
A wonderful example of the fact that the Chinese never abandon the patterns, designs and traditions of the past is this fabulous jade Bi coin. This is very like the coins that have been recorded from the Song Dynasty as being imitations of even earlier jade coins. Remember that there is more than one reason that these are called coins. First they are easy to move around and secondly, they are made of a material that was actually used as a medium of exchange. Jade was not semi-precious in the eyes of the older Chinese cultures, but was extremely valuable. This was especially true when it was a certain color, shaped according to certain patterns and decorated with certain symbols.

This particular pendant dates from a few hundred years ago, from well before the Communist Revolution. I bought it from a dealer that only sells genuine antique pieces of high quality. It is made of very highly valued nephrite jade in the rich green color that ranks on the value scale just behind white Hetian jade which tops the standard. It was made to imitate the Song Dynasty coins from the period 960-1279 AD. It was worked into the shape of the Bi coin from that period, and it is decorated with the ruyi design that was used in even more ancient times.

The archaic decoration of evenly distributed 'ruyi' motifs represented power and longevity to the Chinese of that period. The decoration on this Bi coin is neat and precise. The coin is cool to the touch, one of the intrinsic qualities of jade. The bi is basically a flattish coin with a hole in the middle and fits among the traditional six ritual jade creations of the traditional jade workers: Bi, Cong, Huang, Hu, Gui and Zhang. These patterns have been repeated since the dawn of Chinese civilization, and are said to represent various metaphysical concepts.

The bi-coin is the most widely produced, given its easy practical application and it is most often worn on a string around the neck, or hanging on a belt.
I hung the antique pendant with some beautifully matching Raku porcelain beads and some vintage Italian brass column beads. I finished off the necklace by adding a gold tone non tarnish chain and hammered solid bronze fastener.

Length of Necklace: 18 inches (47 cm)
Diameter of Pendant: 5 cm x 1.1 cm thick (2 in d., 0.5 in)
Inspiration/Story Behind This Product
My fascination with the ancient Eastern cultures brought me to collect significant old hand worked jade pieces at a time when I could afford them. Now I am using them in my own jewelry designs.
Materials Used
jade, brass, bronze, porcelain
Product Attributes

Primary Material: Gemstone and metal

Size: 18 inches long

Pattern: Ruyi

Color: Green

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