1. Use a magnifier with a 15x magnification to look for streaks. Turn the carving over and look at the bottom: the intersecting veins look like hatching. There are always veins on ivory, but not on ordinary bone, plastic, or resin.
2. Look at the figure under the light of an ultraviolet lamp. Natural materials, such as ivory, look lighter in ultraviolet light, while artificial materials look darker. Fake ivory will be darker than under normal lighting.
3. Check by heating. Use a pair of tweezers to grab a needle or nail and hold it over an open fire. Then lean the red-hot item against the most inconspicuous part of the ivory product. If it is real, the red-hot needle will leave almost no trace, only an inconspicuous mark, but you will feel a sharp smell, like when drilling a tooth, since ivory is the tooth. If the product is a fake, a small molten dent will remain from the red-hot needle, and you will notice a recognizable smell of burning plastic or resin.
History and Description
Ancient civilizations were familiar with the material. The first carved products from it were found in caves on the territory of many modern European states, as well as in India and China. The age of some products totals 30 thousand years. Items were made from mammoth tusks.
From the 7th century in many countries, the tradition of bone carving began to take shape. At this time, real works of art were made. In Europe, walrus tusks, deer horns, hippo teeth, whale and sperm whale whiskers were also used. But these materials were not valued as highly as natural elephant tusks.
However, the mass production of tusks made of solid enamel led to a sharp decline in the population of African elephants. At the end of XX century. The international community has decided to ban the trade in valuable material. Only a few African countries have reserved this right, but in a limited way.
High-quality ivory is easy to process, but it is difficult to damage or break it. The material is very durable, does not burn on fire and does not deteriorate in water. The soft cream color of the material is also famous. The tusks of African elephants, which have a uniform color, are considered the highest quality material. The tusks of Indian elephants are almost white, but after some time they begin to turn yellow.
Previously, figurines and various accessories were made from this material, such as beads, bracelets, buttons, hairpins, etc. Today, natural ivory is mainly used to make keys for grand pianos, chess, and combs. For a while, billiard balls were made of this material. But bone jewelry is still popular, although it’s difficult to buy it.
Application and care
Real tusks are a rare material these days. Products from them are expensive. Therefore, in mass sales, only their imitations are more common. For fakes, materials such as:
- animal bones
- horns and teeth
- palm kernel
Hippo teeth are considered the best substitute, as they are similar in structure and appearance to tusks. They only have a slight blue tint. Another common ornamental material is walrus fangs. Beads, bracelets and other products from them are obtained with a yellow tint. Japanese chemists have developed a special technology for the manufacture of this raw material from various components, such as egg shells or milk fat. So they get a substance similar to the original.
Fakes, of course, are much cheaper, and they look different from the real material. Often they quickly become worthless. However, natural ivory, despite its natural resistance, gradually loses its attractive appearance when in contact with human skin or improper care.
You can not keep jewelry made of this material in a dark cabinet. He loves light, and quickly turns yellow in the dark. But even in direct sunlight, it is better not to store ivory, as it will become fragile.
Periodically, items should be wiped with a suede towel dipped in vinegar or lemon juice. The cloth should not be too wet. The dust is washed with a soft brush and a cotton swab. To wipe the earrings or ring from the bone, it is better to use a flannel cloth slightly moistened in water. At the same time, you need to go through the entire product without missing fasteners, links and other hard-to-reach places.
Persistent stains are removed with a white vinyl eraser, which can be purchased at a hardware store. Eraser flakes are easy to remove with a soft brush.
When processing jewelry, it is better to wear gloves on your hands, as the natural material deteriorates from contact with sweat and sebum.
To make the beads, earrings or ivory ring shiny, you can gently rub them with a small amount of petroleum jelly. Ammonia mixed with hydrogen peroxide is used to remove the yellowness from the keys of the piano. Small items such as chess pieces, figurines or hairpins can be dipped in chlorine for 10 minutes. After water procedures, all objects must be wiped dry with a soft cloth.
Healing and magical properties
Products from tusks from ancient times were considered magic amulets that were used to attract good luck. Men are advised to wear bone jewelry in the form of a fang or claw of an animal or bird. Women can choose any jewelry - beads, rings, earrings made of bone.
Equally important is the shape of a talisman. For example, an eagle brings good luck, an elephant inspires confidence, etc. Any amulets made of bone protect the owner from negativity. They can be carried with you or hung in your home to protect your home from troubles. The magical power of inherited amulets increases with each generation. Products made of natural bone are suitable for all signs of the zodiac. Too sensitive and suspicious natures, they calm and protect against negative energy.
The healing properties of natural bone are varied. This natural material contains a large amount of calcium phosphate. It helps with asthma, cardiovascular diseases, endocrinological ailments. The material must be applied to the sore spot. With burns and cuts, the ivory is pressed to the affected area of the skin.
If you always wear jewelry made from natural tusks, they will protect against tonsillitis, scarlet fever and other viral diseases. In addition, the material is a powerful biostimulator. It restores the vitality of organisms, calms nerves, protects against depression and insomnia. In India, folk connoisseurs use tusks to rejuvenate and rejuvenate the body, while Chinese lithotherapists believe that items from them improve the aura.