Antique Ethiopian Coptic “Cross Pattée” (E328TCE)


This elegant antique Ethiopian Coptic cross was fashioned as a Cross Pattée with flaring arms that narrow towards the center and expand to its end. Often crosses made prior to the 20th century in small villages by skilled local metal smiths were simpler, yet they are strikingly beautiful and powerful. This weighty piece was made using the lost-wax process to create a one-of-a-kind pendant, embellished with six round protruding bosses and etched dots added after the lost wax process.

The chain necklace is not included.



No other region has produced the quantity, quality, and diversity as the crosses from the Africa Ethiopian-Highlands, the second nation to adopt Christianity as its official religion. Ethiopian pendant crosses were made in a variety of sizes, designs, styles, and ornamentation which are metaphors for the religious beliefs, ideology, and practices of the Ethiopian Church readily recognized by devotees.  This Christian-Cross is a Cross-Pattée with flaring arms narrowing towards the center and expending wider at the ends which are rounded. Its graceful shape with rounded arms is embellished with six round protruding bosses and etched dots framing each arm that were added after the lost wax process. Although new motifs and design elements have been added over time, makers of these crosses have retained the fundamental forms, and symbols in their individualized African-Art creations. Made using the lost wax technique from coin-silver with attached bosses  and an attached suspension loop allowing a chain or cord to be threaded through it, this African-metalwork Christian-Cross with fine patina is a one-of-a-kind piece of African-jewelry. This type of cross historically has been popular in the Shoa area of Ethiopia, a historical kingdom in central Ethiopia. It is part of the VA Spiritual-and-Inspirational Collection of Christian-Art and Spiritual-Jewelry.

For information and bibliographic citations click here for the blog The Evolution and Brilliance of Ethiopian Crosses




Additional information

Place of Origin

Africa, Horn of Africa


Antique (1200-1920)


19-20th Century

Materials and Technique

Coin silver/alloy

Dimensions (inches)

Ht: 2.625” Width: 1.625”

Dimensions (metric)

Ht: 6.67cm Width: 3.97cm



Weight Metric

19.85 gr


Excellent, age approrpriate signs of wear

Reference Number

E328 TCE