Hollow bracelet

This hollow bracelet with engraved design represents a fraction of the wide range of silver jewellery made, worn and exchanged by highland communities in northern Thailand. Several types of hollow bracelets were worn by Lahu and Akha men. This style of bracelet was probably made by Chinese or Shan silversmiths. For many highland communities, silver was valued more highly than gold. Silver jewellery was a way of investing a family’s wealth to be passed down as heirlooms. It was also believed to have protective properties. Today, where security maybe a problem, silver is kept locked away while aluminium is used as a substitute.Originally, highlanders from China, the Akha and Lahu have recently begun to move southwards into mainland Southeast Asia.

Early 20th century
Northern Thailand
Object size: H2 x D5 cm
Accession No.
Collection of
Asian Civilisations Museum