Afghani Jewelry refers to decorative articles or styles of adornment typical in or originating from the modern state of Afghanistan or neighboring tribal regions. The countries that border Afghanistan include Pakistan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, and Iran. The Afghan nation is composed of over eight major ethnic groups and this diversity contributes to varied artistic and aesthetic tastes within the country. Furthermore, due to the tribal nature of Afghan peoples, many types of Afghan Jewelry are reflective of the nomadic culture in which they originate.
Afghan Jewelry has a long and rich history. Among the earliest and most famous examples of such jewelry is the Bactrian Gold Treasure Hoard discovered in Northwest Afghanistan that dates from 2000 years ago and includes both bracelets and necklaces. These articles are world re-known both for their beauty as well as their refinement. Over the ages many other artistic pieces have been created by Afghani craftsmen, however, due to the ravages of time, much has been lost to war and conflict.
In more recent times, Afghan Tribal Jewelry has grown as a predominant form of artistic expression in Afghanistan. Some of the important tribes whose jewelry is most celebrated include the Pashtun, Turkman, Kazak, and Hazara people. Particularly well known are the Kuchi people who are a nomadic subgroup of the Pashtun tribe. The decorative articles made by these tribes include necklaces, bracelets, pendants, rings, belts, and earrings that are used as adornment both for special occasions as part of traditional costumes and for everyday use.
Tribal Jewelry in Afghanistan is characterized by a number of features including the use of semi-precious stones such as carnelians, jade and lapis lazuli, glass or wooden beads, coins, and various metals including brass and silver. The variety and creative use of these artistic elements in different motifs is truly impressive.