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HOME : Jewelry and Seals : Bracelets : Bactrian Silver Torque
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Bactrian Silver Torque - SP.227
Origin: Central Asia
Circa: 330 BC to 100 BC
Dimensions: 7.25" (18.4cm) high x 8.25" (21.0cm) wide
Collection: Jewelry
Medium: Silver

Location: United States
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A silver necklace in the style of a torque, the beauty of this item lies in its simplicity. Of Greco-Bactrian origin, the culture that produced this item was a synthesis of Alexander’s Macedonian Greece with that of the local regions influenced by his conquest. The shape of the item is semi-circular, formed of silver rod. The two terminals are flattened discs, each singly pierced, and rest several inches apart from one another. The rod from which the torque is made is of a quadrangular cross-section, tapered towards the ends and thicker in the middle, and is gently twisted from end to end. The surface of the metal is inscribed with various designs, including a longitudinal line running the length of each face, and toward the thicker middle, hash marks resembling the barbs of a feather. Perhaps other ornaments, such as rings or gems, might have hung from the torque when worn around the neck.

The untold stories that this artifact must bear silent witness to, carried perhaps by soldiers as evidence of their conquest, or worn by Bactrian beauties to adorn the bosom, are tantalizing to entertain. What can be said about such an item is that it stands as a testament to the beauty carried by simplicity, and the noble craftsmanship of the lands that Alexander sought to conquer. Perhaps a necklace such as this was worn by the Bactrian princess Roxanne on the night of her wedding to Alexander. - (SP.227)


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