Antique Venetian African Trade Bead Necklace Millefiori Flower Eyes Mosaic Dots
Here is a strand of 28 antique Venetian glass beads used in African trade that were a part of a long rope of beads purchased from an antique store in the early 60's.
Trade beads have been in use since the 16th century. They were used as ballast in slave ships outbound from Europe. Upon arrival in Africa they were used to trade for human cargo, gold, ivory and other desirable goods. These beads were probably made sometime during the late 1800's to early 1900's.
- There are 28 beads measuring a total of about 21 inches long.
- They are assorted shapes and patterns. Most are millefiore (a thousand flowers) mosaic cylinders in various lengths and disc slices some with eye patterns. There are a couple of round beads, 4 black beads with white eyes or other patterns, 2 odd beads with bright red or bright green stripes alternating with other patterns, 1 white bead with blue dots, 1 cream bead with red, black, purple eyes or flowers.
- The center bead is the largest measuring 1-1/2" x 1/4". It has the largest and most noticeable chip on end and side.
- The next longest beads measure 1" to 1-1/4"
- I've strung them on black cording. It fits over my head but I've left extra cording in case you want to re-tie it.
- They are in good vintage condition for the most part but there are chips and pits, mostly at the ends, which would be as expected given their age and use. The chips and pits were there when the beads were purchased 50 years ago and I have never worn them, just kept them in a case and admired them.
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