Vintage Ethiopian Axum Coptic Cross (E309YBL)
This vintage Axum Ethiopian cross pendant has religious and apotropaic symbols. The curved rectangular end shapes represent the Ark of the Covenant and the circles represents the eternal and everlasting love of God demonstrated Christ’s resurrection. The circles are also “protective eyes” that can bring blessings and repel evil. The gracefully stylized never-ending knots in the center entraps evil spirits for eternity.
This vintage Ethiopian-Cross from the Northern Ethiopian-Highlands in Africa is a variant of a Coptic-cross referred to as an Axum-Cross where it was crafted. As the most popular African-metalwork Ethiopian pendant crosses are Christian-crosses embellished with religious and apotropaic symbols. This cross is divided into two components. The top has a square with a criss-cross design in the center and the bottom has a square with an endless knot created by pierced geometric forms and enhanced by etched lines. The three arms end in a curved rectangular form with an etched “X” dividing four circles. The square center enclosed a never-ending knot that symbolizes unity, the order of life and the Church, eternity, and everlasting life. The curved rectangular shapes may be associated with the Ark of the Covenant. The circle represents the eternal and everlasting love of God that is demonstrated in Christ’s Crucifixion and resurrection. The circles are “protective eyes that can bring blessings, repel evil and harm, and avert the “evil eye.” Never-ending patterns such as knots and criss-crosses entrap evil spirits for eternity. The etched decoration embellishes the front and back, although the front is more elaborately incised. Made using the lost-wax technique from coin-silver with an attached suspension-loop allowing a chain or cord to be threaded through it, this cross with fine patina is a one-of-a-kind piece of African-jewelry. 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
|Place of Origin||
Africa, Horn of Africa
|Materials and Technique||
Ht: 2.54” Width: 1.5625”
Weight: 17.01 gr
Very good, patina and wear consistent with age and use