Antique 18th c. Chinese carved mother of pearl gaming counter in 14k yellow gold pendant setting 2.5 inches wide by 1 inch high. Beautiful detailed carving of houses, bridges and people on one side and EC monogram surrounded with carved foliar design on the other. The mother of pearl has a lovely iridescence. This 225 year old, hand-engraved gaming chip was created in China for export to Britain's aristocracy of the day. During the early 1700's, wealthy European families commissioned Chinese artisans to make finely engraved sets of mother-of-pearl gaming counters for use in parlor games such as Ombre, Quadrille, Loo and Whist. The demand for these miniature works of art declined after 1840 when card games that did not require gaming tokens became more popular. The shells were ground flat, shaped, polished and engraved - 150-300 years ago, and all by hand! The particular large mollusk that provided these large flat shells was hunted to extinction to supply this trade. These counters are sought after by collectors and are wonderful centerpieces for jewelry.