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Pair of Gold & Coral Ear Ornaments (Godwari or Mendog Kogde)
Sherpa People, Nepal-Tibet
19th century

diameter: 7cm (each), combined weight: 37g

These earrings are won by Sherpa women, typically in Eastern Nepal. They are called variously mendog kogde (Daalder, 1999, p. 305) or godwari or marigold
after the flower they resemble (Gabriel, 1999, p. 132). They comprise a thin repousse gold layer over a copper disk. Each is inset with two coral cabochons
(spaces exist for two more cabochons on each.)

They are attached to the ear lobe via a thick post and in the pair here, a gold chain is added that is worn over the tope of the ear to support their weight. Small
turquoise stones in black pitch form the centre of each earring.

A related pair is illustrated in Daalder (1999, p. 304) and in Hoek (2004, p. 180). Illustrations of a similar pair being worn by a Sherpa woman are published in
Gabriel (1999, p. 114, 132).

Daalder, T., Ethnic Jewellery and Adornment: Australia, Oceania, Asia, Africa, Ethnic Art Press/Macmillan, 2009.
Gabriel, H.,
Jewelry of Nepal, Thames & Hudson, 1999.
Hoek, C.,
et al, Ethnic Jewellery: From Africa, Asia and Pacific Islands, Pepin Press, 2004.

Provenance: UK art market

Inventory no.: 2753

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The ear ornaments are similar to that worn by
the Nepalese woman above, taken from the
early postcard below.