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What is a pendant in jewelry?

A pendant is a loose-hanging piece of jewellery, generally attached by a small loop to a necklace, which may be known as a "pendant necklace". A pendant earring is an earring with a piece hanging down. Its name stems from the Latin word pendere and Old French word pendr, both of which translate to "to hang down".

Pendants are among the oldest recorded types of bodily adornment. Stone, shell, pottery, and more perishable materials were used. Ancient Egyptians commonly wore pendants, some shaped like hieroglyphs.

Pendants can have several functions, which may be combined:

Award

Identification

Ornamentation

Ostentation

Protection

Self-affirmation

The many specialized types of Magic Pendant  include lockets which open, often to reveal an image, and pendilia, which hang from larger objects of metalwork.

Types

Throughout the ages, pendants have come in a variety of forms to serve a variety of purposes.

Amulet

Though amulets come in many forms, a wearable amulet worn around the neck or on the arm or leg in the form of a pendant is the most common. These are objects believed to possess magical or spiritual power to protect the wearer from danger or dispel evil influences.

Talisman

Similar to an amulet, a talisman is an object believed to possess supernatural traits. However, while an amulet is strictly a defensive object, a talisman is meant to confer special benefits or powers upon the wearer.

Locket

A locket is a small object that opens to reveal a space which serves to hold a small object, usually a photograph or a curl of hair. They typically come in the form of a pendant hanging from a necklace, though they will occasionally be hung from a charm bracelet.

Medallion

A medallion is most often a coin-shaped piece of metal worn as a pendant around the neck or pinned onto clothing. These are generally granted as awards, recognitions, or religious blessings.

Painting

Pendant is the name given to one of two paintings conceived as a pair.

Functional pendants

Traveller's sundial pendant (a portable form of astronomical rings) used to tell time from the sun.

Tools worn as pendants include Maori pounamu pendants. Shepherd's whistles, bosun's whistles, and ocarinas can also be made as pendants. Portable astronomical and navigational instruments were made as pendants.

Fashion pendants

Fashion pendants include a small creative piece often made from precious or non-precious stones and metals like diamonds or pearls hanging freely from a chain or necklace. These are generally worn as a statement piece or a fashion ornament.

Pendant, in jewelry, ornament suspended from a bracelet, earring, or, especially, a necklace. ... Pendants are derived from the primitive practice of wearing amulets or talismans around the neck. The practice dates from the Stone Age, when pendants consisted of such objects as teeth, stones, and shells. Generally speaking, a pendant is an ornament meant to hang from the neck on a chain or ribbon. A charm is an ornament meant to be attached to a bracelet and to hang from the wrist. A charm is usually smaller than a pendant, so it doesn't get in the way while using the hand or arm.

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