Ostrich Eggshell Beads manufactured from Ostrich eggs. The ostrich bead culture dates back to the Capsian period and have been found in the Kharga oasis dating to the Neolithic period and are known for being some of the earliest African beads dating back some 12,000 years.
Originating from the Western Sahara, these beads were worn for decoration whether for rituals or everyday nomadic fashion, an evocative natural material from our prehistory with an alluring insight into the past of early modern man. The regions where ostrich beads are discovered is listed as a scientific area of importance. Thousands of beads have been found in Egyptian dynastic tombs and reside in Museums of the world.
The manufacture of the beads is an interesting process. As the ostrich egg shell lends itself so well to the production of beads, the shell being approximately 2mm in thickness was rough cut to the bead shape. the next step was to drill a hole through the bead fragment, this was achieved with thinned stone tools, possibly even bone implements, something like a large thick darning needle of today. Finally to round the bead into shape. The technique of rounding the bead shell into the desired shape is a most interesting one, in Neolithic sites we also find stone pebbles with bead sized grooves worn into them, sometimes one groove on some stones several grooves can be found. Much later versions of the bead makers stones were manufactured in earthenware, rough pottery forms, thick flattened disc’s with many grooves which as the stone pebbles would ware down with use.
You will receive an ancient bead with certificate document from The Fossil Store and a Riker display mount box with glazed viewing lid, please review all the images above.