Jewellery is a tribute to being a woman. Since the inception of civilisation jewellery has been an integral part of Indian society. For Indian women, traditional jewels hold utmost significance, not only in terms of being a piece of embellishment also to mark auspicious occasions.
Jewellery is a symbol of esteem for Indian women.
Spanning a legacy of 5000 years, the Jewellery of India is a striking expression of the country’s aesthetic and cultural society.
For more than 2000 years India was the sole supplier of gemstones to the world. For the rules, jewellery was a statement of power, prosperity and prestige.
The value of India’s fascination with jewellery begins 5000 years ago in Indus Valley.
India was the largest manufacturer and exporter of beads to the world. Also India was home to the Diamond and invented the Diamond drill. Going by the jewellery the ancient people of Indus Valley civilisation were an extremely sophisticated with finely aesthetic sense about jewellery.
History of Indian Jewellery:
The origin of Indian jewellery dates back to the great Mahabharata and Ramayana. In older times, jewelleries are made up of animal skin, shells, crystals and metals which were raw in nature. Then being civilised, human started to modify their jewellery along with lifestyle. They started use of cut piece of stones and little bit polishing instead of using raw metals and stones. Consequently, jewellery began developing an art form showcasing gems, metals and other materials.
Gold, diamonds are the most expensive jewellery which was mainly found and supplied metals by India previously. India became the first to mine Diamonds.
Yet despite the relative simplicity of the early pieces , Indian Jewellery was about to become much more complex in its style and workmanship. In the 2000 years after decline of Mohenjodaro , the Indian craftsman had polished their skill immensely. Delicate figure work on gold, engrossing work and detailed micro granulation over other piece of jewellery has very symbolic importance in Indian literature and culture.
By the time of Raja Maharaja, we had already heard of their use of heavy jewellery Among people. Since then, jewelleries hold important role in determining the status of community among variations.
The sculpture at Bharhut, Sanchi and Amaravati and the paintings at Ajanta Ellora depict a wide range of jewellery worn by both men and women represents the kingdom and the story behind them.
The temples of south India, central India , bengal and Odisha were home to a variety of the jewels art.
Initially these intricate pieces were crafted solely with the purpose of adoring the idol.
Along with the spread of Bharatnatyam , temple Jewellery became an part of developing jewellery statement in Indian history.
These temple Jewelleries are large in size and holds a huge amount of expensive metals like gold. Use of gemstones , in different types of jewellery was remarkable.
The supernatural potency described to jewellery is exemplified by the NAVARATNA.
Navaratna Jewellery holds nine types to precious stones, which together symbolise the nine Gods of Hindu.
Mughal patronage provided the platform for the development of existing traditions in jewellery making. The Kundan method of placing stones in jewellery was invented in the time of Mughal emperors.
Also jadau collection was invented probably by the time of Mughal emperors in Rajasthan. The process of making jadau jewellery involved heating or beating pure gold until its pliable.
Meenakari work on Jewellery was founded in the period of last Nizam, Mughal emperors in Hyderabad. History says that, he gifted a diamond necklace to Queen Elizabeth II when she married Prince Philip.
The story of India Jewellery is incomplete without mentioning the two most famous gems in the world- Kohinoor and hope Diamonds. The history of Indian Jewellery can never be short listed anyway. India’s pride is its metals and piece of art from them.