The exhibition ‘Beautifully worked with silver and gold*’ presents a panorama of early modern Greek jewellery and will be on show in Santirvan, Drama, Greece from 17.06.2023 to 29.10.2023.

Head-dress jewellery – such as earrings and forehead bands, necklaces and pectoral pieces that extended as low as the waistline, belt buckles than covered the abdomen and chain-linked pieces that embellished aprons, they all compose a complex system of ornamentation that both adorned and impressed.

In the islands, the main materials used were gold and pearls, while, in the Greek mainland, silversmiths opted for silver and copper alloys, often gilded, and embellished with semiprecious stones and coloured glass, or worked with niello.

Greek silversmiths exercised similar meticulousness on snuff boxes, flasks for raki, water bowls and amulets, the elaborate but ultimately utilitarian equipment for men.

*From the poem by C.P. Cavafy, ‘Waiting for the Barbarians’, translated by Edmund Keely and Philip Sherrard