Siam sterling pierced earrings. Features a triple fan with Mekhala, the goddess of lightening.
Stamped Siam Sterling , circa Early 1950s - mid 1960s.
Siam Sterling jewelry was manufactured from the 1930s through the 1980s, and was a very popular motif in the 1950-60s. Although Siam officially changed its name to Thailand in the 1940s, the “Siam” nickname for this style of jewelry stuck.
Siam silver is officially called “Nielloware.” Niello is a black mixture of copper, silver, and lead, used as an inlay on engraved or etched metal. American soldiers who visited Thailand in the mid-20th century bought this jewelry for their ladies back home, making it a popular mid-century trend. Much of the filigree was etched by hand by Thai artisans.
It depicts the characters of mythology and from the Ramakien (the Thailand national story) as well as the story of Mekhala and Ramasoon.
Mekhala was a nymph and was born of the sea, of the froth of the waves. With bewitching eyes and long curling black locks, her beauty knew no bounds. Mekhala loved to soar through the heavens and across the waters, flitting this way and that. One day, while flying high in the sky she was spotted by Ramasoon.
Now Ramasoon was also a God. He was born of the storm clouds and the rain was his cloak and carried with him a battle axe. The first time he saw Mekhala he fell in love with her beauty and knew right then and there that he had to possess her.
Mekhala did not feel the same way and she spurned Ramasoon’s advances. In fact Mekhala often teased Ramasoon, she mocked him before quickly flying up and way into the clouds. Ramasoon decided that even if he could not win her heart, he had to possess her.
The next time he saw Mekhala he set chase. Dark storm clouds gathered around Ramasoon and cloaked him from Mekhala’s view. His plan was to wound Mekhala so that she could not escape him and he would make her his own. When the time was right Ramasoon threw his battle axe hoping to capture the beautiful Mekhala.
At the same time Mekhala held out her hand in which was a magical jewel, a crystal that she used for protection. Bright light flashed from it blinding Ramasoon as he threw his axe. The axe missed its mark and rattled harmlessly across the heavens as Mekhala made her escape.
Thus we have the story of lightning and thunder.