An early Taxco maestro and one of Spratling's first silversmiths, Rafael Melendez worked in fine, 980 silver and his pre-1948 pieces are usually crafted out of heavy silver sheet with deeply chased details and a strong pre-Colombian feel to them. The bracelet at hand, decorated with a beautiful turquoise cabochon that has mellowed into a greenish blue over the years, has a pin closure to attest to its early age as well. Fantastic patina that I have hardly touched makes the etchings even more dramatic and when wearing it, one cannot escape the feeling that one is wearing a piece of Taxco history. The bracelet measures a wearable 6 1/2" (perfect for medium to smaller wrists) and is 1 1/8" wide at center front. It weighs a generous 52.7 grams and bears what Hougart hypothesizes might be Melendez's earliest signature, which would date the bracelet in the 1939-1942 period. In excellent vintage condition, classic and a Taxco Deco collector's must-have.