The Worldwide History of Beads

The Worldwide History of Beads

Ancient . Ethnic . Contemporary

  1. Lois Sherr Dubin
  2. Photographs by Kiyoshi Togashi
  • ISBN 9780500291771
  • 29.80 x 22.70 cm
  • Paperback
  • 396pp
  • Illustrated in colour throughout
  • First published 2015


‘The major reference work currently available on all beads’ – The Bead Society of Great Britain
‘The definitive work on beads for both scholar and enthusiast' – British Jeweller
‘A bible for the collector’ – Antiques Info

Since its first publication in 1987 as ‘The History of Beads’, this book has become the world’s definitive guide for bead lovers, collectors and scholars.

History of beads timeline
The remarkable eight-page foldout timeline of the history of beads

• all chapters have been updated with the latest archeological discoveries
• a chapter has been added on adornment since the 1980s
• 225 beads have been added to the remarkable eight-page gatefold timeline that guides readers through the rich history of beads
• the many maps have been modernized and are now in colour
• seventy images, formerly black-and-white, have been changed to full colour
• 200 new photographs have been taken specially for this edition

Beautifully packaged with a new cover, this volume is a must-have for devotees of the first edition and for the next generation of bead obsessives and aficionados. The latest revisions include an update on the oldest bead ever discovered, now dated to around 100,000 BC, and an explanation on why beads worn on the human body were the original media communication system.

Beads are far more than mere personal adornment. They have been used throughout the world as talismans, as status symbols, for religion and for barter. Every bead is a capsule of cultural information, containing a fascinating tale of the origins of its materials, its manufacture, its many uses, perhaps its travels, and its potent symbolism.

Lois Sherr Dubin has studied, collected and lectured on beads for more than fifty years. The History of Beads was her first book, and she has since written several other books on beads, including North American Indian Jewelry and Adornment. She continues to work with museums, bead societies and bead publications worldwide. Her international practice in this field enabled her to travel widely and to obtain beads from numerous countries.