Ozdoby z nefrytu i jadeitu. Dawniej i dziś. Wybrane przykłady

Dagmara Król

Jade and Nephrite Nowadays and in the Past. Few Examples

The purpose of this article is to outline a topic of jade ornaments in Chinese culture through the ages. In order to avoid confusion, very often caused by inaccurate translations and misclassifications, the author explains the terminology, focusing on differences between jade, nephrite and jadeite. The first signs of jade usage go back as far as Neolithic period, mostly in a form of ceremonial objects. Processing technologies and ornaments manufacturing spreaded through ancient “Jade Road” and we can learn about it thanks to archaeological findings. Although with time the “Jade Road” transformed into “Silk Road”, jade stayed one of the major traded goods. Jade objects have always been a luxury commodity, a symbol of wealth and high position in society. Nowadays the jade jewellery is keeping its value because of its sparsity and significance in Chinese tradition, with some jadeite produce reaching exorbitant prices. Author tries to show timelessness of jade in few examples and encourages further research of the topic.

Key words: archaeology, jade ornaments, China, jade road

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