Blowing Conch Shell 5.5"+
Spiritual History of the Blowing Conch Shell
The warriors of ancient India would blow conch shells to announce battle. This is famously represented in the beginning of the Mahabharata war at Kurukshetra. In Mahabharata, each warrior's conch shell had a specific name- Krishna's Paanchajanya, Arjuna's Devdutta, Bhima's Paundra, Yudhisthira's Anantavijaya, Nakula's Sughosa and Sahadeva's was known as Manipushpaka.
The conch ( shankha ) is also blown to invoke Shiva. The special relation between the conch ( shankha ) and Shiva is evident from the similarity between the word Shankha and the word Shankara, which is one of Shiva's many names. The word Shankara could have been derived from Shankha-kara which roughly means conch-blower (Shankha = conch, Kara = blower).
The conch shell is also sacred to the Buddhists. The right-coiling, white conch shell is one of the eight auspicious symbols of Tibetan and Nepali Buddhism. It is believed to represent the beautiful sound of the spread of Buddha dharma .
The conch has tremendous religious importance among the Bengalis. Conch bangles ( Shankha porana ) made of conch shell are worn by Bengali Hindu women as ornaments at their weddings as a religious rite. During recitation of wedding hymns, the father of the bride gives her a pair of conch bangles. The groom also brings a pair for her. Hindu women wear conch bangles with utmost devotion seeking the well being of their husbands.
How Blowing Conch Shells are Measured, and Why
Below are 2 images that show how the conch shells are measured. The images depict 6" blowing conches. The important thing about a conch shell and what determines the price is the amount of space the conch shell has inside it for the air to blow around it. They call it the "blowing arch". So you could have two conch shells that are both 6" long and one could be very skinny and one could be very fat. The fat one would have a lot more space inside it for the air to blow around it so it would be more expensive than the skinny one that has less space for the air inside it.
You can see in the photo how it is measured around the blowing arch to account for this. Since conches are created by the natural world, and they are found in the ocean, every one is a bit different.