Gourmet Wear

Beautiful Bactria

The earrings in gilded brass, sodalite and fluorite from the Bactrian jewelry collection from the Rmn-Grand Palais. ©Rmn-Grand Palais. Courtesy Rmn-Grand Palais. Handout via The Gourmet Gazette

Paris, France — Some of the great places to shop in Paris for highly original objects are the museum boutiques of the Rmn-Grand Palais. Today the spotlight is on their Bactrian jewelry collection inspired by this legendary land in present-day northern Afghanistan, southwestern Tajikistan and southeastern Uzbekistan. The eye-catching collection draws is modeled along the lines a lapis lazuli and gold necklace circa 2100-1900 B.C. in the collection of the Louvre in Paris. The earrings, bracelet and necklace in this collection are carefully fashioned in gilded brass, sodalite, a royal blue semi-precious gemstone, and the highly colorful and ornamental fluorite.

The bracelet in gilded brass, sodalite and fluorite from the Bactrian jewelry collection from the Rmn-Grand Palais. ©Rmn-Grand Palais. Courtesy Rmn-Grand Palais. Handout via The Gourmet Gazette

Bactria or Bactriana was an ancient region and celebrated in Antiquity as a cultural and religious center, a crossroads of civilizations and one of the earliest centers for Zoroastrianism and this until the Middle Ages. Its two capitals, Balkh and Termez, were nestled upon one of the branches of the Silk Road and it was in Bactria that lapis lazuli, found in the necklace at the Louvre, was mined for the first time. And it was from Bactria that the Magi or the Wise Men, possibly Zoroastrian priests, are said to have set out on their journey to Bethlehem which they reached on January 6th, bearing gifts. 

The necklace in gilded brass, sodalite and fluorite from the Bactrian jewelry collection from the Rmn-Grand Palais. ©Rmn-Grand Palais. Courtesy Rmn-Grand Palais. Handout via The Gourmet Gazette

The Rmn-Grand Palais, Rmn is the French acronym for the Réunion des musées nationaux, distributes its own products and those brought out by others in a network of 34 bookshop-boutiques that it manages in French museums as well as on its on-line boutique. These fabulous jewels dedicated to the mysterious land of Bactria are available at the boutique of the musée du Louvre and on the Internet at  boutiquesdemusees.fr ©Trish Valicenti for The Gourmet Gazette

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