Antique Tibetan Gau
This Tibetan high grade silver oblong gau amulet box ornamented with gilt filigree work and a real coral was worn suspended from the top gadrooned tube.
The lower decoration is a stylized dorje ornament which hangs at the bottom when worn and a loop at the bottom from which hung suspended ornaments or decorative chains that hooked up to shoulder level.
The central field is covered in separately embossed or stamped gilded filigree sprig leaves, flower and petal elements, surrounding a stylized "Tree of Life with the Axis Mundi" and central coral.
The central field has been applied separately on top of the silver sheet and held in place by two beautifully tailored pins.
The outer edge is decorated with individually stamped and applied petals of an open lotus and silver beaded wire, with a copper backing container.
It is very hard to find oblong gau amulet boxes today that have the tube and stylized dorje ornament. Most are hinged on each side for wearing. The gau was used as a container for handwritten or printed charms and relics, and herbs.
There is some cracking across the copper back and has signs of mending.
The front section, side sheet, dorje and tube of the Gau Box has been tested and are made from a high grade silver, 92.5% approx. weighing 99.5 grams (4.28 oz.)
Width: 8 cm (3")
Height: 10 cm (4")
Depth: 2.2 cm (7/8")
Total Weight: 137 Grams (4.835 oz.)