Precious Metal Weight: 5.79 dwt
Precious Metal Material: 18k buttery yellow gold with a 14k yellow gold split ring bail
Dimensions: This pendant measures 32.00 mm north to south (length) including the bail x 31.71 mm east to west (width) x 5.90 mm back to front (depth). The split ring has an interior diameter of approximately 5.00 mm.
Weight: A very remarkable 9.00 grams
Markings: No markings present; believed to be an artisan-made bespoke accessory.
Era: This pendant is believed to date to the mid to late 20th century, most likely with roots in the 1970s. However, without markings or a known provenance, a more exact date range cannot be determined.
Buyer Notes: Ultra impressive and immense in symbolism, this pendant is nothing short of a masterpiece. Its heft, top quality make, and gold content only add to its desirability. A true collector's piece, this pendant is virtually one of a kind, with no exact or near-exact comparables on the open market at the time of research and listing.
Masterfully handcrafted with very rich high-purity gold, this figural pendant is quite sizable, is not of hollow make but is constructed of three solid, primary components: a posing lion and two stylized Greek letter symbols. This assembled construction method can be perceived in the photos provided and renders the piece beautifully three-dimensional. As such, it is intended to be beheld 'in the round', precisely as a miniature, wearable sculpture. This pendant does not have hallmarks present, which is not unusual for artisan pieces, though does leave its original creator without the praise and credit they so deserve!
This pendant is an excellent example of thoughtful and deeply significant design. Every single detail is captivatingly intricate, the mix of textures and finishes catching the light and accentuating the authenticity of both the physical gold and the spiritual motif:
Within the very center, a lion proudly asserts his dominance, his face articulated with serenity, his stance that of the heraldic statant, and his tail lowered in confident composure. Being that lions maintain their careful balance through the length of their tails, we can understand this lion's posture to be one of unyielding tenacity, existing in defiance of apprehension. While undoubtedly fully alert to his surroundings, this lion is not in a threatened state. Rather, his temperament is resolutely poised, appetent toward attentive tranquility. Spiritually, this animal is emblematic of protective strength, yet also of tender affection, both qualities of leadership and intimate companionship.
The two forms inside of which the lion stands may be interpreted in ideogrammatic terms. One might consider this practice akin to the study of art history, wherein critics decipher the elements of a work so as to understand the depths of meaning furnished by the maker. This concept is activated in golden form within this piece:
In ancient times, it was common for Jewish religious leaders to refer to the vastness of G-d or the whole of something using the first and last letters of the alphabet. Framing the lion is a layered pairing of the Greek Alpha (A) and Omega (Ω) symbols, their silhouettes stylized into softly rounded, full-circle forms. Theologian Ensign Konstantinos Kostakis submits that the Greek alphabetical code describes Alpha as the initial power, represented by sunlight, and Omega as the planet, the world, which receives-- and indeed, depends upon-- sunlight, the initial power, the Alpha of the Heavens.
Paralleled with the Gospel, Alpha is the divine providence, and Omega encompasses we, his beloved children. Diving further into a scriptural lens, the title of 'Alpha and Omega' is designated solely to the Messiah, who entered into the the world to replace the exclusivity of religion with the inclusivity of relationship. Being love and life himself, he is mercifully unchanging, distinctly contrasting to the nature and whims of man. This means he, as Alpha and Omega, cannot be contained or defined within time itself, but is more than time.
As one union with both God the Father and with the Holy Spirit as helper (παράκλητος; our intuitive advocate and intercessor who entwines and aligns our hearts and minds with God's), he is the author of time and all it contains, the redemptive composer of every life, who through indiscriminate compassion, accomplishes divine completeness within every story, without fail.
It is possible that the maker of this pendant intended to convey a dual interpretation of the symbols that comprise it. Using Greek alphabetical code again, the alternative (or additional) symbolism may be deciphered in kind:
If the Greek letters are instead read as Delta (Δ) and Omicron (Ο), then the meaning is equally profound. The Delta form references a river delta, wherein the rush of a river flows into a broader, comparatively more stagnant body of water. The delta becomes an intersection of life-giving properties, as the sediment carried there richly and specifically nourishes the roots of flora and provide an environment best-supplied for abundance of life.
The Delta letter is a triangle, which is the sturdiest known formation, and thus, harkens to the identity of God as the Triune-- God, Son and Holy Spirit. The ancients understood triangles to be sacred shapes that point to enlightenment and evoke the fruitfulness of life. According to the alphabetic code, the letter Delta is decoded to mean a power that builds to create, while the Omicron (also spelled Omikron) is decoded to mean the breadth of a given space, one of any size and capacity. Omicron is indicative of the nurturing safety of a mother's womb, and implies an unsurpassed power within a bounded environment, though the boundary lines are undefined. Omicron has no beginning or end, and yet expresses fullness.
When Delta and Omicron are 'read' together, we learn that Delta is the eternally reliable lifeforce for the Omicron, which is the gift of space we inhabit, and is as assured as the sun rising to herald each new morning, and which flows in a rhythm that sustains and refreshes. Together, Delta and Omicron proffer the same promise of relational investment, restorative affection and spiritual provision as Alpha and Omega.
These symbols are all deeply symbolic across generations, cultures, beliefs and contexts, and aside from the scriptural leanings described above, have been used for nearly all of recorded history to represent the certain sacrednesses that constitute this existence, including transcendent bravery and fortitude, expectant hope in figurative rebirth and eternal transformation, and a reverence for the elements that, together, bring wholeness of life.
This pendant is not simply a gleaming accessory, but also a reminder of the beauty and perseverance of creation, reawakening the wearer to life's seen and unseen worth.