VIRTUAL COLLECTION OF ASIAN MASTERPIECES

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Cross Pendant with Necklace
FA-80-119
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Why this is a
Masterpiece

Scholars believe that the design of this cross pendant was inspired by examples from Mexico, with whom the Philippines enjoyed lively relations during the Galleon Trade (1565-1815). With precious adornments in gold, silver, tortoise shell, and pearls, cross pendants became symbols of prestige. This particular cross is a fine example.

History of the Object
This 17th century cross pendant came from Batanes, the smallest province in the Philippines in terms of population and land area, and the home of the Ivatans, a people known for their elaborate ornamentation – men wore more earrings while women wore beads interlocked with their gold jewelry. As early as 1686, Spanish Dominicans had already set foot on the Batanes group of islands for evangelical missions. By 1718, Spanish rule in the province prohibited the use of jewelry and indigenous embellishments among Ivatans and compelled the natives using the threat of the armed force to move to the lowlands. In place of their beads, Christianized Ivatans wore austere rosaries and cross pendants around their necks and adopted western dress. Smaller crucifix designs soon emerged as neck pendants and as protection for travelers. This object was featured in Ayala Museum’s exhibitions: Art of the Cross: A Philippine Tradition (2001) and published in its accompanying catalogue (2002) and Treasures at Ayala Museum (2002).

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Type
Costume and Jewelry 
Materials
Gold, coral stones 
Measurements
Width 4.4 cm. Length 46.6 cm.  
Creator name
Unknown 
Creator date
Unkown 
Where it was made
Philippines; Batanes 
Geography
Philippines 
Time period
AD 17th century ~ AD 17th century 
Creation date
17th Century 
Function
Religious accoutrement 
Acquisition
Purchased in 1980 
Copyright
This photograph and information pertaining to the artwork pictured herein may be used only once and only for the purpose of the Virtual Collection of Masterpieces (VCM) project. The image may not be cropped or manipulated. Credits (title of artwork, artist, collection/owner, and Ayala Museum) should always be included when publishing this photograph. 
Acknowledgements
Hornedo, Dr. Florentino H. On the Trail of Dominican Engineers, Artists and Saints. Manila. 2002. Castro, Sandra. Art of the Cross. Makati City: Ayala Museum. 2001. 
Owner
Ayala Museum, Makati, Philippines 
Museum
Ayala Museum 
Credit line
Ayala Museum Collection 

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