Ancient Roman Glass Bead Necklace


A restrung Ancient Roman necklace composed of black glass beads. Thin oval beads with slight variations in texture and hints of coloured natural striations are interspersed with small circular beads along the string. The necklace is enriched with three larger beads forming the pendant at the centre. Such necklaces testify to the popularity of glass ornaments across the Roman Empire.

Date: Circa 1st - 4th century AD
Condition: Fine condition, restrung with modern silver clasp (please be aware that the clasp has not been professionally tied). 24cm length when folded.


SKU: BL-01 Category:

The mass production of glass in Ancient Rome prompted the development of glass jewellery. The ageing process of glass endows Roman glass jewellery with unique qualities. For instance, contaminants manufactured into the glass, exposed to the surrounding environment over thousands of years, result in beautiful lustres and speckling, where the glass might formerly have been transparent.

The ancient Romans considered jewellery to be an essential accessory, for it provided a public display of their wealth. Roman jewellery at first followed trends set by the Etruscans, using gold and glass beads, but as the power and spread of the Roman Empire increased, jewellery designs became increasingly elaborate. Different cultural styles from Greece, Egypt, North Africa, and the Orient were all incorporated to reflect Rome’s prosperity as a dominant, conquering city. Archaeological finds of Roman jewellery are relatively rare, considering the magnitude of Roman civilisation and the historical and geographical span of the Empire.

Weight 12.8 g
Dimensions L 45.0 cm



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