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This bracelet is made from six tiger claws set in gold mounts. Each gold mount is a wide cap set at the top of the claw, delicately chased with floral designs. The mount is held in place with a set of prongs extending from a tab along the front edge of each claw. Each claw is connected to the other with a series of 'O' rings set into loops at the cap and a second set driven into each claw at its mid-section. From that second set of rings a fine gold cable chain drapes across each claw. The clasp is a tongue and groove catch. The bracelet is part of a parure that consists of a necklace, earrings, and a brooch.
This tiger claw bracelet is part of a set, called a parure, which includes a necklace, earrings, and a brooch. The set was purchased in Bombay (now called Mumbai), India, in 1875 as a gift for the popular Cambridge author Georgina Lowell Putnam (1836-1922). Sets of tiger claw jewelry were quite fashionable in the nineteenth century, made as hunting trophies and tourist souvenirs by talented Indian jewelers. Tiger hunting was a common pastime for British government officials stationed in India. Jewelers in Britain and the United States advertised tiger claw jewelry in the 1870s and 1880s.Claw jewelry is a beautiful but troubling product of that era.
Title Tiger Claw Necklace Accession Number 1928.147
Title Tiger Claw Brooch Accession Number 1928.149
Title Tiger Claw Earrings Accession Number 1928.150AB
Bombay, India, Asia
1 1/2 x 3/8 (WxD) (inches)
Gift of Miss Louise M. Dewey
1875 (When this set was made in 1875 the city of origin was called "Bombay." Today it is called "Mumbai.")
Bombay (Salsette Island, Maha¯ra¯shtra, India)