Ancient Faceted Crystal Beads with Lapis Lazuli and Crystal Drop Pendant
Rock Crystal, Lapis Lazuli, 20k gold
The necklace is 18 ¾ inches (47.7cm) in length. The necklace weighs 33.5 gm.
A necklace of twenty-three rock crystal beads alternating with twenty-four lapis lazuli beads. The center bead is a pendant 1.82 cm in height, 1.2 cm in thickness at the widest point and 1 cm wide. It is roughly a teardrop shape with a flat bottom and faceted with six faces. The drill hole diameter is 2.2.mm. There are five cornerless cube beads, five diamond shaped flat beads with the sides angled into two faces to make a six sided bead, two bi-conical or barrel shaped beads that have been faceted with six sides and ten other flat and rectangular solids, some facetd on the sides in two planes to give six sided volumes. One bead is a flat oval with all rounded surfaces. The beads are all 1.1cm -1.5 cm in length graduating very slightly in size towards the back of the necklace. The beads are for the most part 5mm 7 mm in thickness and 1.1cm -1.5 cm in width. The drill hole diameters are around 1.5mm to 2mm. Both techniques for drilling are found in these crystal beads: two holes meeting in the center as well as one slightly tapering hole that is drilled straight through. The crystal beads alternate with lapis lazuli beads that are 5mm - 8mm in length and about 5 mm in width. This gives a nice regularity to the strand but slight differences in size give the necklace a lively rhythm and avoids the rigidity of mechanical uniformity. These beads come from the Swat Valley in what is now northern Pakistan, between the Indus River and the Karakoram Mountain range to the north. They were probably made about two thousand years ago. The beading tips and hook and eye clasp are 20k gold.