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This is the traditional Indian Chank shell, Turbinella pyrum (Linnaeus, 1758). The shell has considerable significance in Hinduism and Buddhism. It is considered to be sacred and is one of the eight auspicious symbols. In these religious contexts, the shell is sometimes modified by having the tip of the spire cut off, so it can be blown as a ceremonial trumpet. Some shells used in this way are decorated with metal and semiprecious stones. This one was carved in Nepal but came home with me. My India shell treat!

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