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Original Message:   Re: Tircul (Pyu) fakes
Hi Jake,

Plastic! That's amazing. I've never heard of that "technique" before. I actually was watching this bead, too, not because the "etching" was so convincing, but because I thought it might be an authentic bead with an inlaid design (though I haven't seen that technique on carnelian so far, only on agate). Anyway, I didn't bid on it finally because the ends looked wrong, but if I had known the lines were actually filled with plastic I probably would have done - just to add to my own little gallery of fakes.

I don't quite understand why, but in the last two or three years there has been an enormous upsurge in fake Tircul (Pyu) beads, and sometimes amulets, on eBay and other sites. The reason I put Pyu in the title here was in the faint hope that some of the buyers of these fakes might come to the forum to educate themselves with regard to what they were purchasing. Here is the # for one such item: 170871989538. This seller from Thailand does a pretty good business selling these pseudo-etched beads as well as figural glass and stone copies of ancient Tircul beads. He/she also sells a few pieces that look as though they might be genuine, but why should anybody in their right mind bother taking the risk? And now there are signs that other sellers from Thailand are catching on to the recognition that there's the possibility of a thriving market here, so I expect we'll see even more of these things turning up in the future.

And then there are the people (mainly from the US but also from France) who throw the "Pyu" tag into their headings for vintage or recent Pumteks, presumably in the hope that it will add to their credibility. It seems to be working too.

One bright note is that Jan (mosquitobay) has recently been selling some nice authentic Tircul beads on eBay at very reasonable prices. Thank heavens for honest dealers!

All the best,

Will

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