Antique Peruvian Sodalite Beads with Silver and Crystal Center
Sodalite, Rock Crystal, Silver
The necklace is 28 ¼ inches (71.8 cm) in length. The necklace weighs 230 gm.
A necklace of twenty large sodalite barrel shaped beads with a long barrel-shaped bead of rock crystal (quartz) at the center point. There are eight large spherical Fine (999) silver beads in the necklace. Two of them are facing the crystal bead at the center point. They are 2.2cm in length and 2.3cm width. The second set are also of the same dimensions. The third set are 1.5cm in length and 1.7cm in width. The final pair are 1.33cm in length and 1.43 cm in width. The rock crystal bead is 4.8 cm in length, 2.05cm in width at the center and 1.7 cm in width at the ends. The drill hole is 1 cm in width at the surface and tapers towards the center where it is half the diameter, meeting a similar negative cone shape drill from the other end. There are traces of red pigment inside the perforation. The sodalite beads are large, 3.3 cm in length, 2 cm in width and with a drill hole diameter of 6mm. The smallest at the back of the necklace is 3.12 cm in length, 1.15cm in width and with a drill hole of 5mm. Many of the beads are not round in cross section; two of the opposite sides have been flattened. The beads are said to be from Peru but at present we do not know from which Andean culture they originate. The oldest culture, the Chavin, originated four thousand years ago. Later, the Moche in the north and the Wari in the south both formed distinct cultures. More research will be needed for us to place the origins of these beads more precisely.