This pendant is attached to an 18 inch chain, but if you prefer a different length (16 to 24 inches) please reach out to us immediately after making your purchase.
This setting is similar to a previous limited offering, ‘Medusa’s Tomb’ & due to the magnifying lens, the detailing on the bellies of the two-headed snakes is visible *&* magnified.
Designed to be worn over the heart, this “magnifies” this most vulnerable, tender organ, thought to be the place where our capacity for love & feelings of love are stored. The Ancient Egyptians believed that the heart was the locus of intelligence; it was so highly revered that it wasn’t removed during the mummified process, as many other organs are including the brain. The heart as an embedded, smoldering star ~ kept within the body for all eternity. The heart as a jewel, the heart as a piece of glass that can be broken, yes, but that can also act as a window, a magnifier.
Here, the domed magnifying glass behaves as a visual metaphor for heart magnification while still being protected by Medusa’s snakes ~ who’s visage was known for its apotropaic magic in ancient times.
The two-headed snake is a personal symbol for me; my father, now long gone, showed me one at a pet store when I was just a small kid and the memory impressed on me. The idea of things being born a certain way, a bit unusual, also stuck with me at the time and has become a sort of personal visual metaphor ( or flag if you will ) for how some of us are just born a bit out of step with the rest of the world, through no fault of our/their/your own. Sometimes, if we are lucky enough, we find others like us. Outsiders.
Much like the bear who digs into the earth making his own ‘cave’, the Ancient Medusa lived a solitary, lonely life in her own. Her ‘otherness’ was the nest of snakes atop her head: in earlier iterations, she was monstrously grotesque, but as time passed her features gave way to a stunning beauty beneath the hands of the artists who reimagined her.
This re-visioning marked her as one of the first ‘Femme Fatales’ of the cultural consciousness – a creature possessing the beauty of a woman and all the power that physical beauty bestows (seduction, sexual prowess) but also terrifying in her deeper powers of death. She embodies the tension between beauty and terror: one look from Medusa turned anything living into stone, though no women were recorded in Myth to have befallen this fate.
Separated from the body, the head of Medusa took on apotropaic qualities, appearing at the entryway of structures and homes to ward off evil and trespassers. In this way, the head of Medusa took on a protectionary quality, frightening away energies and people intent on harm, contradicting the murderous qualities she possessed when fully embodied. Beheaded by Perseus as a trophy, even her blood held potent magical qualities: Pegasus was born from her severed neck and coral is said to be the hardened blood of the Medusa. Set in fine metal, coral also became apotropaic, often worn on the necks of children that extended past ancient times.
Akin to the lightning bolt of destruction in The Tower, Medusa embodies this energy with her death gaze. Wearing these talismans brings this duality of nature to their wearer: her head as a symbol, became a protectionary talisman, while in life, she was a force of destruction; horror and death. The energy of both beauty and terror exists within us, much as the snake has the power of its deadly venom as well as the power to heal.
- 44mm at its widest
- Sits approximately 21mm off of the body
- 43mm from top to bottom
- Shows on Jess at 16 inches
- Shown on Miguel at 20 inches
- Pendant, chain, jump rings, and chain are all solid sterling silver and oxidized to a gloomy grey and finished to highlight the silver beneath
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***This is handmade to order, just for you! Please allow approximately 6 weeks for creation and shipment.