Beads: Journal of the SBR
Re: Frit Core bead (one on cover of latest Bead: Journal...) -- beadiste Post Reply Edit Forum Where am I?
Posted by: Beadman Post Reply
02/01/2020, 11:27:07

Hi Chris,

First, I have not read the Beads article yet—though I expect to soon. I am on-record as having the opinion that "frit-core" is mistaken on two counts. The material is not "frit"—and the interior is a base.

The beads are intriguing and provocative. And I would be inclined to think they are closely related to the early larger ovoid trade beads that are likewise dark with white patterns—those having dots suggesting a floral pattern. (Also copied in glass at Venice, much later in time.) It would be informative and instructive to have a more-clear idea of the composition interior—and, in fact, the whole process of manufacture.

Regarding the beads I showed, discussed later in this thread, I think the following should be considered. I say this, because I have documented what I believe are two separate but similar-looking beads. I think we have an early imported trade bead, made by an obscure industry, probably European, and perhaps France. (This being nothing more than a guess.) I suppose these early beads are specimens of pate de verre; or, at the least, share some points of manufacture in-common. And they are recovered in the American Northeast and Southeast; and as well as Africa and perhaps elsewhere.

I also think that these beads were (or may have been) the prototypes for an uncommon series of muraqad ("Kiffa") beads. And, in fact, I wonder if these were not some of the earliest muraqad beads made (?). Composed BEFORE the colorful trend that dates from ca. 1920, when muraqad were devised (that also have parallels to pate de verre and powderglass-beadmaking)—though these need not be as early as the composition beads.

So, my opinion is that there are two similar-looking groups of beads in this discussion. And we should not confuse one with the other. Jamey

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