Woman’s festive decoration. The Yakuts.

Woman’s festive decoration
Collection MAE RAS: № 1071-65
Image ID: 3929337
Woman’s festive decoration
The Yakuts
Yakutia (Sakha) , Bologurskiy district, Amga village
North Asia. Siberia, East Siberia
late 19th-early 20th c.
silver, brass, sueded leather (rovduga), glass
Vasilev Viktor N., ethnographer (Siberian studies)
This exhibit is a woman’s silver decoration called ilin-kilinkebiser, which in the 19th century was common among the Yakut people who inhabited a vast territory along the banks of the Lena River. All plates are decorated with engravings. The most common motive was a spiral and its variations. This could be a “running spiral”, whose ends or curves were often decorated with trefoils, medallions and crescents. Patterns formed by paired spirals were also widely spread. The most favorite pattern called “lira” was formed by two adjoining asymmetrical spirals that formed each other’s mirror images. The “running spiral”, which reminded of a sprout, was widely spread in the art of all cattle-breeding peoples of the Asian steppes: the Kazakh, the Kirghiz, the Altai, the Tuva, the Khakass, the Buryat and the Mongol people. These motives are related to the culture of the early nomads of the Great Steppe. The bearing foundation of this type of Yakut decorations was formed by a torc (kyldjy) – a unique phenomenon in the jeweler’s art of Eurasia in the 18th – 19th centuries. It is a massive cast hoop whose surface is decorated with a spiral cut imitating a twisted rod. Such torcs originate from the nomadic culture of the peoples of Eurasia that sufficiently influenced the traditional culture of the Yakut people.