Bangle-sellers are we who bear our shining loads to the temple fair... Vivo will buy these delicate, bright R‘.1ll'IboW'-tll‘ltCd circles of light? Lustrous tokens of radiant lives for happy daughters and happy wives.37 one of the oldest art objects in India, the bronze statuette of a dancing girl excavznted at Mohenjo Daro (56) epitomizes the antiquity and the universality of wrist ornaments in India. She stands in the nude with one arm at her hip, the other arm completely weighed down with a collection of bangles. From then on the variety and shape of wrist ornaments spanned the gamut of nature’s materials and human creativity.
More than any other single jewellery form in India; the bangle has been crafted from the widest variety of materials. Ancient fragments testify that bangles were made from terracotta, stone, shell, copper, bronze, gold, silver and almost any material that lent itself to craftsmanship. Lac and glass bangles in a plethora of colours are a common sight in India. From simple plain circlets of metal, to ones decorated with etched and repousse designs, to fabulous examples with bird and animal-head terminals and studded with gems, these circlets symbolize the potent energies of the sun.
To the Indian woman, ornaments for the wrist have always been significant emblems of marriage. “As These six types of bangles are often worn together. The order in which a woman wears wrist ornaments is usually an indication of her regional origins. Ornaments for the upper arm take a variety of forms; from the most simple circlet of metal or a single amulet strung on a cord, to the elaborate gem-set bazns of’ Mughal India and vankis of south India. Some are purple and gold-flecked grey, for her who has journeyed through life midway. Whose hands have cherished whose love has blest and cradled fair sons on her faithful breast…’
soon as a bride of the Khonds of (amuser enters the bridegroom’s house, she has two enormous bracelets, or rather handcuffs, of brass, each weighing from twenty to thirty pounds, attached to each wrist, to prevent her from running away home. On the third day they are removed, as it is supposed that by then she has become reconciled to her fate even when changing bangles a woman never allows her arm to be completely bare a simple string or even the end of her sari is wrapped around the arm until the new set is worn Abul fazal classified bangles on the basis of popular prevailing shapes kangan bracelet gajrah bracelet made of gold and pearls in the form of five golden barley corn strung on silk chur a bracelet worn above the wrist bahu like the chur but smaller and churin a little thinner than ordinary bracelet.
GIRDLES OF GRACE
The waist belt served a dual purpose; it held the lower garment in place and was yet another embellishment to the feminine form. Its presence is evident in almost every male and female image through Indian history. The girdle is referred to by many names. Asvaghosa refers to it as mekhla, rasana, kanchi, and Natyashastra of bharata. In the Natyashastra of Bharata', a girdle of a single string of beads is kanchi of eight Strings is mekhla; of sixteen strings, a rasana, and with twenty five strings, the kalapa; a net of pearls strung around the waist is the matukai In Cliol-.1 inscriptions, girdles are named kachcholam in the form of a snake, the kalavam, a multi-stringed girdle with h pearls, corals, lapis lazuli and other precious stones; and the elaborate gem-studded sacred girdle, tirup-pattz gtu Today, girdles, known by the colloquial terms or kamar patta, are out of fashion and hardly ever worn.
RINGS OF HARMONY
The simple ring was not ignored in the vast array of larger ornament forms. In India, finger rings are an important part of the physio-metaphysical value of jewellery; the finger functions as a medium between the physical body and the spiritual body. The middle finger of the left hand is referred to as the sun linger. This finger is believed to attract and absorb the energies of the sun, which are then transferred to the body. It is recommended that a ring should I normally not be worn on this finger, since it amounts to weighing down the flow of energy.
Writer-Usha R. Bala Krishnan & Meera Sushil Kumar