Berber Star of David Necklace with Enameled beads, African Green Jade and Vintage Berber Amber Resin


This 25" necklace features a green burnt orange and lapis-blue vintage enameled Berber Hirz pendant with a Star of David, strung together with large Berber enameled Moroccan beads of matching colors, African green jade beads, Vintage Berber Amber Resin beads and low-grade silver Yemenite wire spacers. Two Lapis Lazuli beads emphasizing the blue of Star of David delineate the pendant from the rest of the necklace. The Hirz pendant had three traditional decorative dangles, and is 85x40 mm long. The pendant is in made using traditional Jewish Moroccan metal smiths. The large Berber enameled beads are about 25x40 mm. See photo for further scale detail. The deep natural green of the African jade beads and the deep orange of the faux amber gently complement and emphasize the orange and green enamel of the enamel of the beads and pendant. The necklace is strung by me from vintage Berber and Yemenite beads,

This is an excellent gift for a Bat Mitzvah, Hanukkah, or any other occasions in the Jewish Calendar.
Read more about Berber and Yemenite silver jewelry and history, and Lapis Lazuli below.

About Berber Judaica Jewelry:

The Berbers have been a traditionally nomadic people populating Morocco and neighboring countries on North Africa. Silver jewelry has been traditional and highly valued adornment of Berber women. Morocco is rich in silver mines, and silver was mined there as early as the 1st century AD. In the 15th century, many Jewish silversmith escaping the Spanish Inquisition, arrived in Morocco. They brought with them new casting, piercing and enameling techniques, which had a substantial influence on Berger jewelry-making. Their typical centuries old filigree work is still seen today in much of the modern-day Moroccan jewelry.

With the Jewish population dwindling in Morocco today, the skills of the bygone era silversmiths continue to live in the Moroccan jewelry traditions today way beyond the few remaining Mellahs (Jewish quarters).

The Star of David has been found as an architectural motif in ancient synagogues as early as the 3rd century AD. It started appearing in Jewish texts by the 11th century, and became particularly prominent in medieval Kabbalistic texts. By the 16th century, it became an official symbol of the Jewish communities, appearing on flags, prayer books, Seder plates, and many other objects of Jewish life and ritual. The Star of David remains perhaps the most recognizable Jewish symbol today.

About Yemenite Silver Jewelry

History of Yemenite jewelry making goes back to the biblical Queen of Sheba and her gifts of jewelry to King Solomon. Later Islamic rule in Yemen imposed a prohibition of jewelry making on the Muslim population, and the art of Yemenite silversmithing became exclusively the domain of the Jewish community of Yemen. These were highly acclaimed craftsmen passing the art of the trade from generation to generation. Today, however, the art of Yemenite silversmithing is in decline. Only just a handful of Jewish silversmiths remain in Yemen. Most of the Jewish families are now in Israel, but fewer and fewer of the young generation engage in the age-old tradition, and the beautiful objects of this trade become more and more a piece of history.

About Lapis Lazuli:

Lapis lazuli is a composite rock containing lazurite, calcite, pyrite, and a number of other minerals in varying quantities. The ancients called it sapphire for the blue color not to confuse it with the modern sapphire which is a different gem). It also was known as Ultramarinum (beyond the sea), when it was first introduced to Europe.

Since antiquity, the main source of Lapis Lazuli was ancient Bactria (now Afghanistan), where ancient mines are still producing the world supplies of this beautiful stone. It was used in religious objects, amulets, and jewelry, as well as in pigments and paints since Neolithic times. Jewelry made of lapis lazuli has been found in prehistoric tombs across Asia, Africa, and Europe. Ancient Sumerians believed it was a royal stone, and through the centuries its “royal blue” color has been associated with royalty. It is said that the breastplate of the Jewish High Priest Aaron included the stone lapis (although referred to as sapphire). Ancient Egyptians loved it in jewelry and amulets, they also appear to be the first to use powdered lapis lazuli in makeup. Lapis Lazuli is found in many Egyptian royal tombs, including that of Tutankhamun.

Its timeless beauty keeps it a favorite in modern times as well. Lapis lazuli is the Traditional birthstone for December and the accepted gem for the seventh and ninth wedding anniversaries. It is the Planetary stone for Capricorn and the Zodiac stone for Libra.