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Lot 0106B
Pre-Columbian, Colombia, Sinu/Zenu culture, ca. 800 to 1200 CE. A lovely trio of solid gold nose rings, two with a distinctive U-shape (8.3 g and 10.1 g) and the other with an indented body and termini which face outwards rather than downwards (4.6 g). Each nose ring demonstrates the sophisticated gold-working technique and artistry of the Sinu peoples. Nose rings - or "narigureas" - were among the most important pieces of jewelry in ancient Mesoamerica. In the Pre-Columbian world, gold jewelry represented not only elite social status but also had sacred connotations as the yellow hues were associated with the sun and the celestial realm. The ring with lateral-facing terminals is formed from 16K gold, and the other two rings are fashioned from 14K gold. A stunning set of ancient nose adornments! Size of largest (discoid termini): 1" W x 0.7" H (2.5 cm x 1.8 cm); gold quality: 14K (downward-facing termini) and 16K (lateral termini); total weight: 23 grams (4.6g; 8.3g; 10.1g).

The Sinu peoples lived along the Caribbean Coast and in the river valleys of Colombia from around 200 to 1600 CE. They were gifted in many ways, known for their extensive irrigation and waterwork systems, the significant political roles of women in their society, and of course, their exquisite goldwork. In the 16th century, the Spaniards were impressed by the opulence of the Sinu's ceremonial burial gold. Some of this gold, including these examples, was cast using the lost wax method; however, much was also hammered into reliefs and plates.

Provenance: private Los Angeles County, California, USA collection

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All three rings have surface wear and minor abrasions commensurate with age as expected, minor casting flaws, slight bending to overall forms, and some tarnishing to exterior coloration, otherwise intact and excellent. Very light earthen deposits throughout.

Buyer's Premium

  • 24.5%

Lot of 3 Sinu 14K / 16K Gold Nose Rings - 23 grams

Estimate $2,000 - $3,000Jul 19, 2018
686 S. Taylor Avenue Suite 106
Louisville, CO 80027
United States
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