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Ancient Bead Necklace

This is a bead necklace featuring an ancient glass bead, black coral prayer beads, Indo-Pacific beads, gold beads hand made by Charley Hafen, finished with small vintage beads and a 14 Karat gold clasp.

The central bead is a rare Ancient Roman Banded Glass Bead, dated 200 - 700 A.D., the Roman Empire period. It was most likely made in the Eastern Mediterranean, possibly Egypt. The bead has been stabilized and is protected by a 14 Kt gold sleeve in its perforation.

The four black beads are Vintage Black Coral Prayer beads dating from about the early 19th Century and are Yemeni Islamic beads. The decorative silver studs make these beads special.

The small beads are from Classical Java and date from 750 - 1500 A.D. They are all, generally, from Southeast Asia, Sri Lanka or Southern India and were traded from China to Africa. They are called Trade Wind beads or Indo-Pacific beads and were probably the most widely traded bead of all times.

The gold hand made beads begin in sculpting wax. A substantial amount of 24 Karat gold is added to copper, silver and/or nickel. Each small batch of beads made has a different proportion of these metals. This is close to an alloy the Romans called Electrum. They are then cast in the lost wax process, a center hole drilled, smoothed and polished, with applied finishes such as hammered, distressed or left untouched.


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Item code: n80


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For a detailed background on these special beads, click here.