These earrings exemplify the art of Shakudo. They are circa 1890, backed in gold, and framed with gold twisted wire work.
Shakudo is an alloy of approximately 96% copper and 4% gold and when patinated forms a fine gray/black. The Japanese artisans finely decorated the swords of the Samurai warriors. It was considered a noble profession of the highest standard. However, after the Haitorei Edict in 1877, the Samuraie culture came to an abrupt end. These highly skilled artists finding themselves unemployed, used their talent to create jewels for the Western market and for the Japanese women to adorn their kimonos and their hair. Sadly the industry folded at the turn of the century, and today their artistry remains only in the hands of eager
collectors who value its distinctive beauty.
These earrings , both top and bottom have birds in flight with outstretched wings among the leaves and branches. Gold silver and copper gilding create the subtle beauty. They measure 1 6/8 inches long from the top of the wire X 3/4 inches across. Overall condition is excellent with some slight wear to the gilding. They hang gracefully on the ears. Japan, circa 1890