Trade beads, especially glass beads are absolutely unique artifacts.
They combine value (as they have replaced money for thousands of years) and esthetic value (they have been worn as ornaments).
They have been worn around neck as necklaces and around wrist as bracelets: on places where they were easy to watch and protect.
They last for centuries.
They passed thousands and thousands of kilometres.
They were respected, loved, adored, hated, object of envy, pride, fight and worries...
They have lived with their lords for days, months, decades...
They were born in fire.
They were skillfully designed by masters.
They have been strangulated and hang on a piece of iron or fabric or rope...
They have been polluted by the dust of the road, sweat of the exertion, blood of the aggression and vengeance.
They habe been washed by the drops of wine during celebrations and by salty water of the ocenas and by crystalclean waters of mountain springs where the pilgrims quenched their thirst after long long voyages.
Some have seen the Rome raise and fall, some went to far farg islands, some passed the silkway and were traded to appear in the southern Arabia, in central Africa or in Oceania.
They were worn, and traded and lost and presented and thrown away and found again and again...
They talk.
They tell their stories.
They tell the history of mankind.
They are more than just a bead.
They are the proud.