"Síofra" - Sheela na Gig - Special Edition Sterling Silver Figurine
Síofra is an Irish name meaning "fairy."
Cast in sterling silver from an avocado stone carving by Jan Campbell.
Each sterling silver piece is hallmarked by the Irish Assay Office, located in Dublin Castle, and is stamped with Jan's unique maker's mark.
Height: 2.5cm /// 1 inch
Sheela na Gigs are figures that have been found carved into the stonework of many medieval churches, castles and other buildings around Ireland and Great Britain. Sheela na Gigs generally depict a female figure displaying an exaggerated vulva. There is much mystery surrounding the meaning and origin of these fascinating carvings.
There is folkloric evidence that Sheela na Gigs were known as "birthing stones" and were loaned out to women in labour. Women would rub the figure in order to encourage their own vulvas to open and ready their bodies into birthing. A theory of her origin that I like is that these carvings may be remnants of a pre-Christian pagan Mother Goddess religion. The figure has connotations with fertility, her displayed vulva representing the gateway between non-life and life, some saying that the whole universe was born from her yoni. Another theory is that the figures were used to ward off evil, derived from women lifting their skirts to curse evil spirits.
Designed by Jan Campbell.
Handmade in Ireland.