Aleppo: Silversmiths

Date: c. 1990

The craft of the silversmith has declined to near extinction by c. 1900. The reasons for this can be attributed to complex layers of social, economic, and cultural changes, including the fact that silver has lost its importance as a reserve currency. In Aleppo silversmithing was done almost exclusively by Armenian Christians. Their primary work involves repair work, or selling silver jewelry and antiques to tourists and antique shops. One of the unique silver products of Syrian craftsmen is nielloed jewelry, which was produced by silversmiths in the Khan el Suchne district of Aleppo. This style of silver jewelry catered to tourist demands. See also: Goldmith; Inlay Worker.

Citation: Kalter, Johannes, “Urban Handicrafts”, in Kalter, Johannes, Margareta Pavaloi, and Maria Zerrnickel, eds. The Arts and Crafts of Syria: Collection Antoine Touma and Linden-Museum Stuttgart (London and New York: Thames and Hudson, 1992), pp. 76-78, figs. 140-42.