About this Piece
Available in 925 Solid Sterling Silver with a 46cm chain and lobster clasp.
Length 22mm, Width 16mm, Depth 3mm
Ireland is unique in having a musical instrument as its emblem. It is one of the oldest instruments in traditional Irish music dating back to medieval times. It is a triangular wooden framed wire or gut stringed instrument plucked by the fingers nails.
In the words of Giraldus Cambrensis, the twelfth century Welsh scholar, describing the musicianship of the harper “...the perfection of their art seems to lie in their concealing it, as if it were the better for being hidden.”
History of the Celtic Harp
The cláirseach, or harp, is the national emblem of Ireland, appearing on flags, passports, and currency. It was an instrument of the elite in Ireland and Scotland, requiring years of practice to master, with strings made of metal that had to be constantly dampened due to their long resonance. Though it may have existed as far back as the 11th Century, its position as a symbol of Ireland and Celtic culture earned it the enmity of the English authorities in the late medieval period, who eventually banned it entirely - only a handful of harps from before this period have survived to this day. However in recent years the harp has had a cultural revival (with new musicians typically favoring small models), both as an instrument and as a symbol of Irish identity.
About the Maker
Annie Quinn has been working as a jeweler for the past twenty years, having first studied jewelry design at the National College of Art and Design in Dublin, and later apprenticing to Bent Exner in Denmark where she specialized in architectonic jewelry design and gilding.
Annie's jewelry takes inspiration from Irish culture, landscapes and architecture. From the céili music of her family's tavern in the Gaeltacht Lár in County Donegal, to the rugged coastlines populated with traditional cottages and battered by the wild Atlantic winds, each piece of jewelry embodies key aspects of native Irish landscapes and culture.
All silver pieces are hallmarked by the Dublin Assay Office.