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Jewels of the Nizams

Usha R Bala Krishnan

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ISBN 10: 8175083069 / ISBN 13: 9788175083066
Published by Department of Culture, Government of India, New Delhi, 2001
Condition: Very Good Hardcover
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Bibliographic Details

Title: Jewels of the Nizams

Publisher: Department of Culture, Government of India, New Delhi

Publication Date: 2001

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition:Very Good

Dust Jacket Condition: Very Good

About this title


One of the most outstanding collections of gemstones and jewellery was acquired by the Indian government in 1995. Sometimes worn but never shown, these jewels once belonged to the Nizams of Hyderabad, reputed to be the richest men in the world.

Jewels of the Nizamsis the first ever study and documentation of this collection. Once part of the Nizams' state regalia and personal heritage, the ornaments date from the early 18th century to the early 20th century. Finely crafted from gold and silver and highlighted with exquisite enamelling, the jewels are set with Colombian emeralds, diamonds from the Golconda mines, Burmese rubies and spinels, and pearls from Basra and India.

Though only a fraction of the legendary wealth of the Asaf Jah dynasty, the collection is breathtaking when translated into gem weights. There are over 25,000 diamonds weighing in excess of 12,000 carats, more than 2,000 emeralds weighing over 10,000 carats, and pearls exceeding 40,000 chows.

Jewels of the Nizamsdocuments this unique collection of jewels that give credence to legends, apocryphal tales and fading memories of a fabulously wealthy dynasty that ruled the Deccan for seven generations.

About the Author:

Usha Ramamrutham Bala Krishnan has a PhD in Ancient Indian Culture and a post-doctorate degree in Museum Studies. She has worked for the Brooklyn Museum, New York - where she pioneered and steered the museum's Mughal Jewellery project - and has also catalogued Indian jewellery in the collection of the Musée Barbier-Mueller, Geneva.

Bala Krishnan has been researching, writing and lecturing on the subject of Indian jewellery for many years. A fine arts consultant based in Mumbai, she writes on various aspects of classical and contemporary Indian art for publications around the world. Usha R Bala Krishnan is also co-author of Dance of the Peacock: Jewellery Traditions of India.

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