The Dorothy Methvin McClatchey Collection

Pendant

Pendant

Thailand or Laos
1994.34.29
Early 20th Century

The Golden Triangle of Southeast Asia lies at the juncture of Myanmar, Thailand and Laos. Much of the population that inhabits this hilly area is organized into small tribal groups, including the Akha, Karen, Lahu, Yao, Lisu, Mien and Hmong. In each of these groups, silver jewelry plays an important role in personal ornamentation, particularly during special events such as New Year ceremonies where the finest clothing and jewelry are displayed. In this region where traditional currency has been devalued, many of these tribal groups keep a great deal of their wealth in silver jewelry. Silver pendants with miniature grooming tools are commonly worn by members of these groups, much like the chatelaine worn by Victorian women during the nineteenth century. This pendant has a central circular motif with several chains suspended beneath. Two of these chains terminate in bangles while the other five end with personal grooming tools, including a pair of tweezers, a spoon and three spatulate pieces.