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VINTAGE SILVER ABALONE SHELL RING

Christine Alexander Fine Jewellery


Regular price £39.00
VINTAGE SILVER ABALONE SHELL RING
VINTAGE SILVER ABALONE SHELL RING
VINTAGE SILVER ABALONE SHELL RING

A lovely ornate design Abalone shell set statement ring in 925 Sterling Silver. In beautiful and clean vintage condition, I have only given this piece a basic polish with a cloth, as the patina and light oxidization only add to the ring's character. 

This vintage piece is a UK size R. Sizing is possible, there is actually some imperfect millegrain on the rear of the band where it has been sized before. 

The band is 3.9 mm wide at the back and measures 23.3mm wide at the front of the ring. Good finger coverage. Stone: 15mmx8mm in a bezel setting. Weight 6.98g. Marked 925. 

A gemstone created in the sea, with a fusion of blues and greens. Just like the ocean’s waves swirling and rolling in beautiful patterns. Considered a delicacy by many throughout the world, the Abalone, or Ear Shell, is a Gastropod: a member of the Mollusc family of sea creatures. in the family Haliotidae. Abalones are otherwise known as marine or sea snails.  

The shells of abalones have a low, open spiral structure, and are characterized by several open respiratory pores in a row near the shell's outer edge. The exterior of the shell is striated and dull. The iridescent nacre that lines the inside of the shell varies in colour from silvery white to pink, red and green-red to deep blue, green to purple. Abalone has been harvested worldwide for centuries as a source of food and decorative items. These shells have been found in archaeological sites around the world, ranging from 100,000-year-old deposits at Blombos Cave in South Africa to historic Chinese abalone middens on California's Northern Channel Islands.

The shell of the Abalone is used in jewellery, and the exceptional and mesmerising colours of the shell are a by-product of farming the shellfish for its meat, making the crafting of jewellery from the Gastropod very eco-friendly. The flesh of abalones is widely considered to be a desirable food and is consumed raw or cooked by a variety of cultures. Each shell embodies a unique display of colour and markings, almost like the human fingerprint, therefore no two pieces are exactly the same.  In addition to jewellery, you may have seen this gem inlaid into acoustic guitars. 

When you see the name ‘Paua’, this refers to Abalone Shell that is only from New Zealand; Paua is the Maori name for the gem. Around the NZ coastline, there are both commercial organisations and hobbyists extracting the gem from the seabed. I am not sure whether it is due to the shell’s array of wonderful colours, or the fact that their next-door neighbours often boast about their prized Opals, that many in New Zealand refer to the Paua as ‘the opal of the sea’.  As you would expect there are lots of Maori legends and folklore surrounding their local treasure.

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