THE VALUE of BEADS: WHY BEADS ARE SO PRECIOUS?
"Beads are some of the most stunningly attractive
and varied items of jewelry. From the breathtaking
gold designs of ancient Egypt to the haute couture
of contemporary artisans' fumed-glass wonders,
beads have been the most popular components of
personal adornment. But they are also far more.
They have been used throughout the world in
countless ways: as talismans; status symbols in the
ancient world and in present-day Africa; as religious
artifacts in the Buddhist, Christian, and Islamic
faiths; and as a standard medium of barter
throughout the world. Each bead is therefore a
capsule of cultural information, containing a
fascinating tale of the origins of its materials, it's
manufacture, its multifold uses, perhaps its travels,
and certainly its potent symbolism."
- ("The History of Beads: From 30,000 B.C. to Present"
by Lois Sherr Dublin, 1987)