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 Post subject: Seashells
PostPosted: Mon Jun 20, 2011 12:44 pm 
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I'm really not a big fan of organic gems, but as I went through the organic gems forum I was surprised there was no seashell discussion here, so decided to create one.

Indeed, if mother of pearl and coral are regarded as gems, then definitely some seashell species could also be regarded as gem material, and there's clearly some jewellery potential there.


Let's start with cowries:
Cowries, also known as 'porcelain' are a group of marine gastropods in the family Cypraeidae.
Some species in the family Ovulidae and Trivia are also often referred to as cowries.
Uses of cowries: as charms, for divination, for decorative and ceremonial purposes, used very extensively in jewelery. Have historically been used as currency in several parts of the world.
Here are a few pics:

Cypraea mappa (note: similar pattern in Cypraea geographica)
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Cypraea cervus
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Cypraea talpa
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Cypraea tigris (note: similar pattern in Cypraea pantherina)
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Cypraea aurantium
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Lyncina argus
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Cypraea albuginosa
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Cribrarula garciai (note: similar pattern in Cribrarula cumingii)
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Erosaria beckii
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Annepona mariae
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Palmadusta diluculum
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Mauritia histrio
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Luria isabella (note: similar pattern in Luria controversa)
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Zoila rosselli
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Cypraea eludens
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Cypraea mauritiana (note: similar pattern in Mauritia depressa and M. maculifera)
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Mauritia asiatica (note: similar pattern in Mauritia arabica)
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Cypraea fultoni
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Monetaria caputdraconis (note: similar pattern in Monetaria caputserpentis)
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Jenneria pustulata (Jenner's cowry)
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Cypraea Annulus (C. annulus and C. moneta have both been used as currency)
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Last edited by cascaillou on Sun Apr 23, 2017 7:37 pm, edited 54 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Seashells
PostPosted: Mon Jun 20, 2011 10:02 pm 
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The 3rd pic are like the ones I used to collect at Phillip Island many moons ago.
Some gorgeous patterns there. :P

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 Post subject: Re: Seashells
PostPosted: Tue Jun 21, 2011 3:57 am 
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Aaaahhh... cowrie shells... subject of our imagination and worship since the earliest of days. Possibly one of the oldest 'gems' around. I like these electrum ones here:Image
1991-1750 BC
Middle Kingdom, Egypt
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 Post subject: Re: Seashells
PostPosted: Tue Jun 21, 2011 5:48 am 
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Certainly one of the first universal adornments of mankind. Everywhere in the world they were treasured in one way or the other. Used as currency until very recently (maybe still?) in many parts of the world.

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 Post subject: Re: Seashells
PostPosted: Tue Jun 21, 2011 8:58 am 
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Let's continue with cones:

Conus is a large genus of small to large predatory sea snails, venomous marine gastropod molluscs, with the common names of cone snails, cone shells or cones. This genus is in the subfamily Coninae within the family Conidae.
Uses: Naturally-occurring, beachworn cone shell "tops" (the broken-off spire of the shell, which usually end up with a hole worn at the tip) can function as beads without any further modification, in Hawaii, these natural beads were traditionally collected from the beach drift to make puka shell jewelry.

Conus textile
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Conus gloriamaris
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Conus aulicus
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Conus cedonulli (incredible pattern!)
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Conus litteratus (note: similar pattern in Conus leopardus)
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Conus marmoreus
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Conus generalis
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Conus bengalensis
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Conus hirasei
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Conus gubernator
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Conus mustelinus (note: similar pattern in Conus capitaneus)
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Conus excelsus
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Conus nobilis victor skinneri
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Last edited by cascaillou on Thu Nov 30, 2017 12:20 pm, edited 47 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Seashells
PostPosted: Tue Jun 21, 2011 11:31 am 
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=D> Wow...I'm speechless.


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 Post subject: Re: Seashells
PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2011 9:40 am 
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Other seashells...

Black-Lip Pearl Oyster (Pinctada margaritifera) with pearl
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Let's note that besides Pinctada species, two other big sized seashells that are used as commercial sources for mother-of-pearl are Turbo marmoratus and Tectus niloticus:
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Polished Nautilus shell (very pearly)
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Abalone (Haliotis species) and abalone pearls
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Queen conch (Strombus gigas) and conch pearls
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Clanculus pharconius (strawberry top shell)
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At last, while Murex Pecten has no potential as jewellery material, it is such an incredible seashell that I had to share:
Image


Last edited by cascaillou on Wed Nov 29, 2017 6:23 pm, edited 23 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Seashells
PostPosted: Fri Jun 24, 2011 4:23 am 
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Tim wrote:
1991-1750 BC
Middle Kingdom, Egypt


~4000 years and not feeling them. It looks so "modern" to me. Maybe "timeless" would be more appropriate.
I'd should add that it's very difficult to really impress me with a jewelry piece...


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 Post subject: Re: Seashells
PostPosted: Wed Aug 13, 2014 8:07 am 
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Lovely..... never seen before such beautiful seashell....
android casinos


Last edited by dariorogers on Thu Aug 14, 2014 12:13 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Seashells
PostPosted: Wed Aug 13, 2014 11:58 am 
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Wow, I've never really thought about seashells in the "gem" sense, but there are definitely some gems in those photographs!


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 Post subject: Re: Seashells
PostPosted: Wed Aug 13, 2014 4:54 pm 
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Cascaillou--I never knew these shells came in such a vast array of beautiful patterns and colors! Thank you for posting these!! =D>

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 Post subject: Re: Seashells
PostPosted: Fri Aug 22, 2014 2:28 pm 
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You offer us a beautiful parade of sea beauties! thank you, Cascaillou

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 Post subject: Re: Seashells
PostPosted: Fri Aug 29, 2014 10:01 am 
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all for your enjoyment :-)


Last edited by cascaillou on Thu Apr 23, 2015 1:13 pm, edited 20 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Seashells
PostPosted: Fri Aug 29, 2014 10:13 am 
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Another notable use of the nautilus shells was to make very expensive goblets, which can be seen in still-life paintings of the time. From how they look in the paintings, anyway, they sure were beautiful.

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 Post subject: Re: Seashells
PostPosted: Sat Aug 30, 2014 7:24 am 
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here's a funny one: the carrier shell (Xenophora)

Image
Image

The carrier snail cements pieces of rock or shells to its own shell at regular intervals as the shell grows: that shell is a mineral collector!

Now, can you picture what will happen if you would have one in an aquarium and provide it with gold nuggets and sapphires...self-setting jewellery!


Last edited by cascaillou on Thu Apr 23, 2015 1:16 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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