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Native American Cameo
by: Anonymous

Hi Tiffany

nice looking cameo! The feather motif on the top of the cameo and the choice of subject point to it's Native American origin. In Native American Indian culture, feathers represented the power of the thunder gods. Feather also represent in Indian culture the power of air and wind.

Throughout their history, Native Americans from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Coast have used their local natural resources for manufacturing Native American Indian jewelry and art. Variations of American Indian jewelry are as diverse as the cultures that spawned them. Native American jewelry and art arose from different paths depending on economic and spiritual beliefs. The Iroquois used beadwork as a means of trade, and Navajo Indian Jewelry making was a source for economic survival and tribal identity. Different tribes such as the Apache, Zuni, and Santo Domingo Indian Tribes wore jewelry to communicate historical successes and to gain supernatural favor and powers.

An abundance of semi precious stones allowed the Southwestern Navajo, Zuni and Hopi Tribes to develop the skills necessary to become master artisans of these beautiful gemstones. It's hard to say what material your cameo is made from Tiffany, also because the back is encased. Many modern cameos are carved into layered agates. The layers are dyed to create strong color contrasts. The most usual colors used for two layer stones are white on black, white on blue, and white on red-brown. On rare occasions you can find three layer stones. The colors are usually black on white on black.

During the nineteenth century, the Spanish introduced the silversmith craft to the Native American Navajo Tribe. Experienced jewelers integrated both old and new concepts to develop some of the most recognizable pieces of Native American Jewelry seen today. Examine the back to see if you can see a signature of the artist. A list of native american hallmarks listed alphabetically, can be found at the following Here..

From turquoise pendants to turquoise necklaces, bolos to belt buckles, the Navajo have intertwined the beauty of silver, turquoise, and other stones that have created a combination of metal and rocks that have been a constant source of beauty throughout history. These combinations have generated some of the most breathtaking jewelry pieces ever created.

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