Oriental corals

Marco Polo wrote, referring to the East: “…coral brought from our land to those areas, it is sold at a higher price than in any other place”.

In Oriental antiques collecting, the term “Chinese coral” does not refer to the provenance of the coral but to the producing technique. Red coral, the most spread, is fished and traded mainly to create jewels.

However, it is also used for the production of true works of art, very hinged and with incisions of very good quality, often assembled on drilled gold or silver.

Oriental corals’ history

The most ancient historical evidence which refers to corals dates back to the Palaeolithic (35.000-10.000 BC). The oldest manufacture has been found in a burial in Chieti during the Neolithic. Finer manufactures have also been found in Sumerian, Egyptian and Phoenician decorative works.

Celts used coral as a decorative material, also inserting it in metal objects. However, it is with the Romans, that corals assume a true decorative role, becoming unique elements, especially in necklaces.

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Coral group, Japan, 19th-20th century
depicting two children with female figure over budai

The symbolical value of corals

The best coral is that of red colour which comes from Japan, used since ancient times. The value given to this material is also linked to magic and symbolic aura.

Perseus’ legend is thus connected to the symbolic value which encloses this element; the origin of the coral is indeed associated with Perseus, who, as the myth narrates, washes in the sea the blood that gushes out of Medusa’s head.

The blood which, getting petrified in the sea acquires and gives magical virtues to coral. Starting from this myth, ancient beliefs associate balance between life and death to coral. Furthermore, Christian interpretation associates corals to the blood of Christ: coral thus becomes a symbol of the Passion and, consequently, of the Resurrection. 

Oriental corals’ valuation

Antichità Giglio offers a free valuation service of Oriental art, among which jades and corals. Valuation allows to carefully analyse the characteristics of an Oriental piece of art and has the aim of stating a value on the market for the piece under consideration, a fundamental detail for the sale. 

A valuation of Oriental art that you own not only allows the attribution of a commercial value to the piece of art, but also allows to highlight eventual flaws or imperfections, fundamental characteristics, among which the authenticity and the epoch of realisation.

Relying on antiques and ancient art experts to evaluate pieces of Oriental art that you own means exploiting at best the potential of the pieces that you wish to sell.

Oriental art valuation is free if aimed at selling, even without constraints of commitments for your works; the first valuation is also very simple, professional and quick, it is enough to fill in our online form or to send us pictures and a brief description to our e-mail info@antichitagiglio.it or on WhatsApp to the following number 335 63.79.151. 

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