| Man's ceremonial necklace

Tanimbar Islands
south Moluccas, Indonesia

Man's ceremonial necklace 19th century
shells, cowry shells, plant fibre, metal
22.0 (h) x 19.7 (w) x 2.4 (d) cm
Musée du quai Branly, Paris
© 2010 Musée du quai Branly Photograph: Thierry Ollivier/Michel Urtado/Scala, Florence


Ancient graves provide extensive evidence of body adornments including bangles, anklets and necklaces in shell, stone, clay and metal. Naturally occurring ornaments like shells and animal tusks have remained popular for millennia but at times have also been reproduced in precious materials. This necklace reflects the enduring appeal of the riches of nature.

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