Antique Shiva Lingam Casket, Lingam Stone, High Grade Silver, South India, 85.8 Grams
This is a very fine Ovoid high grade Silver Lingam Casket (ayigalu or shivadhara) in the "round pot" shape. This is the most comon type worn by Lingayat laypeople. Lingayats are easily distinguished from other Hindus because in most cases the lingam casket is visible on the body.
The bottom section is embellished with a round ball finial. The central sphere of the box is flanked by two projecting rectangular sides with conical lower sections - these also are embellished with round ball finals as well. Lingam caskets carry a jangama lingam stone.
This is an old beautifully made, very fine 28.5" (72cm) silver Indian snake chain that has been strung through the two outer finials allowing the box to be suspended from the neck. The snake chain of this quality on its own has quite some value and there are no breaks in the silver wire work. The Lingayats believe movable lingams to be the only true symbol of Shiva. All Lingayats carry their personal lingam with them at all times. After death they are buried in a sitting position with the lingam in the left hand.
Width: 6.cm (2 1/2")
Height: 5cm (2")
Depth: 3.7cm (1 1/4")
Chain: 72cm (28 1/2")
Weight: 85.8 Grams (3.025
Material: Tested High Grade Silver 92.5% plus.
Jangama Limgam Stone: Length: 28mm (1 1/8")