Antique Qing Dynasty bride's silver lock and amulet necklace. nlvs745

Antique Qing Dynasty bride's silver lock and amulet necklace. nlvs745

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Item #: j-vs-nl745
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Antique Qing Dynasty (1644-1911 ) silver lock with chain and dangling amulets. This antique Chinese kidney shaped lock is well over 100 years old and in excellent condition. It is an extraordinary three dimensional Ching (Qing) Dynasty Chinese silver 'lock' amulet meant for good health and long life. This puffy variety of lock depicts twin dragon fish for perseverance and success. One side of this lock has 4 Chinese characters on it - the other side is a floral design- all high relief repoussé. No matter what the border design, elaborate Chinese calligraphic messages usually adorned the backs of the locks ~ offering wishes for the baby to enjoy one hundred years of life.

Traditionally, these locks were presented as gifts to newborn babies so that they would be protected against sickness and insured for good health and longevity. Occasionally, the silversmith added an extra safeguard to a child's lock ~ amulets dangling from chain. On a mundane level, the clanging also helped the mother keep track of her wandering toddler. The amulets include a baby dangle representing a wish for sons and two horses, representing speed and endurance. At the very bottom is a flat silver disk with an engraved bat lotus flower and calligraphy characters.

The top chain with its base clip measures 20 inches. The lock amulet is 2-3/4 x 1-1/2 x 3/4 inches. The lock and dangles measure 12-1/2 inches in length.

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