Queen of Sheba Necklace
The Queen of Sheba, a queen regnant in biblical times, was a woman of great beauty, power and wealth.
The beautiful statement cross in this necklace originates from Ethiopia, the home of the legendary Queen. The lives of Ethiopian Christians have always been inextricably bound to the Church and for over 1600 years they have worn crosses as a sign of their faith. Today they are also commonly worn as a protective amulet to avert bad luck. Social status is indicated by the size and refinement of the cross, and individual designs often identify a wearer with his or her home town or province. The repetitive geometric patterns on this cross are typical in Ethiopian art, and the open lattice style pattern is traditionally associated with eternity. The four cardinal points of the cross can be mapped to fourfoldsystems: the four directions (north, south, east, and west);the four seasons; and the four elements.
Ethiopians used to make the crosses from Maria Teresa Thaler coins, a common medium of trade for many centuries. More recently, they are made from a mix of silver and white metal, and are still widely worn in many regions of the country.
The cross has a gorgeous sheen that crosses between brass and silver depending on the light, and is perfectly complemented by exquisite artisan beads, which are decorated with an intricate brass inlay design and turquoise and coral. These were sourced from an antique shop in Muscat but they are of distinctive Tibetan design, and likely to have been handmade in Nepal.
These beads are personally sourced by Shikha during her travels around the world and this statement necklace is assembled in her studio.