Antique Handmade Glass Persian Eye Beads, Crystal, Sterling Earrings

This image © craftsofthepast 2013

$18.00
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Details

These were old beads when they came into my family in 1971. I have had them in my bead trays for a few decades now, waiting for the time when I could find faceted modern glass beads in a harmonizing color.

First let me tell you about the popularly known 'evil eye' beads so prevalent in the Middle East. In modern times, they are usually pinned on the garments and the strollers of babies as a protective charm. They are sewn onto the garments of older children and on the head coverings of women.

The history of such beads extends to Neolithic or New Stone Age times. They were first found in natural shapes and colors in the banded agates, an abundant gemstone and one of the first ones used as such in the Middle East. They banded stones when ground down by rubbing the rough stone in grit spread on a flat rock, showed a circular 'eye' as the stone became more rounded in the grinding process.

Soon the ancients discovered that such 'eyes' could be etched into or painted and glazed onto clear quartz stones that had been dyed to a deep reddish brown to imitate the natural eye agates that they had found in nature. These are the dZi beads that are worn as amulets in Tibet. See the one in this studio at this link:

Finally, by late antiquity, the Roman period, glass became a highly valued gemstone. Handmade glass wound onto a stick was the most common way of creating glass beads to represent eyes.

In these particular Persian (Iranian) beads, the blue glass was wound by hand and the white glass was applied and then pressed to embed it into the soft warm glass. In nearly all the old hand wound eye beads you will see that the 'iris' of the eye is pierced. I am not sure of the significance of piercing the 'evil eye,' but I can assume that it is believed to enforce the power of the charm against evil.

The Swarovsky faceted crystal is the indicolite shade of blue. These crystals are made to imitate the glow and sparkle of the naturally neon blue tourmaline gemstone.

The beads hand with silver plated separator beads on a silver filled wire. The ear wires are genuine sterling silver.

Measurements:
Length of drop from ear lobe piercing to bottom of eye bead = 2.5 inches (5 cm)

Materials Used

glass and silver

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Product Attributes

Primary Material: Glass and silver

Size: 2.5 inches

Color: Blue

What people are saying about this product…

PrettyGonzo says:
Great pair of handmade designer earrings with antique handmade glass Persian evil eye beads!
5/21/2014
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