Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Jade, you take my breath away.

How jade travels into your life is important. The luck is in the giving and getting. In ancient China the Stone of Heaven was valued even higher than gold. To the victor went the jade sceptre. Second, gold. Third, bronze. Chinese believe jade has soul, increases energy and prolongs life.

Many women wear a simple jade armlet to brings health and good fortune. If broken in a fall the bangle will protect the wearer from serious injury. Well, that's the way Chinese tell it.

For me, Jade brings happiness. Pieces come. Pieces go. The collection grows. Some traded. Other trinkets given to friends as presents. Initially the Imperial stone was mined in Turkestan and later imported from Myanmar as Kingfisher Jade (or Jadeite) a bright crystalline green. That's the one Hong Kong jewellers go for. But jade carries importance in most every society.

Mayan kings wore jade ornaments as symbols of wealth and fertility. In New Zealand, Maori Greenstone carries a rich history and is scarce enough that restrictions are now placed on its exportation.

An African jade necklace sent by Rudyard Kipling to a woman friend in Sydney best described the 'great grey-green, greasy Limpopo River' colour of the river featured in his Just So stories. I had the honour of photographing said piece. Click here if you would care to see the collection.   MaX

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