In Islamic Cairo, the Goldsmiths Bazaar (Souk al-Sagha) covers Sharia al-Muizz between Sharia al-Muski and Sultan Qalaoun’s complex, with scores more shops tucked away on Sikket al-Badestan and Sikket Khan al-Khalili. There are also good silversmiths in the Wikala al-Gawarhergia. Jewellery comes in all kinds of styles, and gold and silver are sold by the gram, with a percentage added on for workmanship. The current ounce price of gold is printed in the daily Egyptian Gazette; one troy ounce equals about 31 grams. Barring antiques, all gold work is stamped with Arabic numerals indicating purity: usually 21 carat for Bedouin, Nubian or fellaheen jewellery; 18 carat for Middle Eastern and European-style charms and chains. Sterling silver (80 or 92.5 percent) is likewise stamped, while a gold camel sign in the shop window indicates that the items in the shop are gold-plated brass. Cartouche pendants (made from all of these metals) can be inscribed with your name in Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs; as each syllable has its own symbol, longer names cost more to inscribe.

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