Vintage Ethiopian Axum Coptic Cross (E310YBL)
This vintage Coptic Axum cross pendant has a circle on top with pierced cutouts and the body has extended arms ending in stylized rectangles with etched circles decorated with etched cross-hatching. The squares at the arms ends may represent the Ark of the Covenant. The stamped circles are “protective eyes” to deflect misfortune and avert the “evil eye.” Made using the lost wax technique, it is a one of a kind piece. The chain necklace is not included.
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 one has a circle on top with pierced cutouts and an etched rounded design. The body has extended arms ending in stylized rectangles with etched circles and the center is decorated on both sides with etched cross-hatching. The squares at the arms ends may represent the Ark of the Covenant which houses the Ten Commandments given by God to Moses which is believed to be housed in the Axum St. Mary’s of Zion church and the relationship of the Ethiopian Church with the Queen of Sheba. The incised circles are apotropaic “protective eyes” to deflect misfortune and avert the “evil eye” and the cross hatches symbolize the never-ending-knot that entraps malevolent forces. 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: 2.44” Width: 1.56”
Ht: 6.19 cm Width: 3.97 cm
Very good, patina and wear consistent with age and use