This ring represents a fraction of the wide repertoire of silver jewellery made, worn and exchanged by highland communities in northern Thailand. The ring is designed from a thin sheet of silver, cut into an elongated diamond shape. It features finely engraved patterns and small raised bosses. This type of ring is worn by Hmong and Yao men.The Yao and Hmong are ethnic minority groups who migrated into Northern Thailand from Burma, Laos and Vietnam during the 18th and 19th centuries. Silver was valued more highly than gold by many highland communities. 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.

Early 20th century
Northern Thailand
Object size: 2.2 x 4 x 1.3 cm
Accession No.
Collection of
Asian Civilisations Museum

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