jewellery and ornaments

In all cultures, man has practiced the art of jewellery, thereby combining appearance and ceremony.

The attention given to the preparation of objects, the taste for precious materials and the refinement of the motifs bear witness to a fascination with appearances as an indicator of a specific status and a certain opulence.

Generally, this jewellery is emblematic of a form of social authority. But it can also play a role as a protector against adversity depending on the materials used in its making and the accompanying symbols. It is most often a bearer of vital energy.


  • War Charm

  • Woman's Headdress

  • Chieftain's Helmet

  • Male Ear Ornament

  • Pendant

  • Forehead Ornament

  • Men's Chignon Comb

  • Pendant

  • Element of Woman's Headdress: Part That Covers

  • Pendant Worn On the Back

  • Face Veil

  • Anthropomorphic Appliqué Jewelry

  • Necklace

  • Pendant

  • Bird Necklace

  • Hairpin

  • Frontal Headdress (known as "hat of the clan")

  • Large Dance Headdress

  • Feather Headdress

  • Male Figurine

  • Bark Apron

Frontal Headdress (known as

Frontal Headdress (known as "hat of the clan")

Clan Headgear, Tlingit, Alaska, 1860 - 1870, wood, abalone, leather, sinews, graphite, copper oxide, vermilion, 70.2006.1.1

The clan headgear is a part of the most important symbolic assets among the Tlingit, who live on the southeastern coastal area of Alaska, and the facing islands. Property of the chieftans, they are shown off at celebrations and potlatch ceremonies. They display a clan's blazons, which are usually representations that personify an animal. The exposed headgear presents two blazons-animals: a bear and a bird, which is the red-throated loon. It is decorated with abalone incrustations, a symbol "par excellence" of wealth and power.