Posted 2 years ago
Recent $3.00 online purchase is this beautiful (.5" deep/wide 2.5" opening) bangle. Cinnabar is a toxic mercury ore and was applied in layers to wood then carved in gorgeous designs for hundreds of years in China and Japan. I have done some research and my bangle seems to fit best around 1950's, in a deep rich red. I cleaned it somewhat but still years of dirt in the grooves. Older cinnabar is a deep red with deep intricate carving, sometimes the reds tend towards a dark rusty red. I don't think it's dangerous unless broken or somehow ingested. Items should be kept out of harsh sunlight and stored away fron dust (OOPS!, well I moved everything.)
Newer cinnabar is usually a brighter color. It's not as deeply carved, usually machine done and it is a safe polymer resin. In pic 3 I show examples of newer. The 1.25" wide bangle has a duck and wave pattern. Very sweet, purchased in 2005. I bought the narrow one in San Francisco in the 1980's. I also ha e a dozen thin black and red bangles with thin metal base inside. Definitely resin.
Cinnabar lacquer quality and prices are all over the place. Anyway, I was very happy with this bangle and hope you enjoy too.