beads journal 25 2013
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Beads 25 (2013)

Early Chinese Faience and Glass Beads and Pendants, by Simon Kwan; translated by Jeffrey A. Keller
The earliest Chinese beads and pendants were composed of faience and appeared during the early Western Zhou period, around the 11th Century B.C. True glass began to be made about the time of the Spring and Autumn period (771-467 B.C.). An amazing variety of beautiful “dragonfly-eye beads” appeared in China during the Warring States period (475-221 B.C.), but these were imported and not local products. The complex eye beads were replaced during the Han dynasty (206 B.C.-A.D. 220) by small, plain glass beads generally intended to be strung together. Small glass stringing beads as well as other forms continued in use in subsequent dynasties, as did various types of pendants. During the Ming dynasty (1368-1644), glass was used to produce beautiful imitation jade objects including fanciful compound pendants.

Chinese Bead Curtains, Past and Present, by Valerie Hector
Relatively little is known about how beads were combined to form larger structures in China. To address this situation, this paper focuses on Chinese bead curtains. It collates evidence from the textual, material, oral, and pictorial records to consider bead curtains from various perspectives. To begin, this study defines bead curtains as textiles, door and window ornaments, screens, and types of beadwork. It then discusses bead curtains of the imperial era (221 B.C.-A.D. 1911) as they are referenced in the Chinese textual record from the 4th century on. A discussion of bead curtains of the post-imperial era (1912-present) follows, offering a small database of 20th- and 21st-centuries examples composed of organic and inorganic bead materials.

Beads from the Hudson’s Bay Company’s Principal Depot, York Factory, Manitoba, Canada, by Karlis Karklins and Gary F. Adams
There is no other North American fur trade establishment whose longevity and historical significance can rival that of York Factory. Located in northern Manitoba, Canada, at the base of Hudson Bay, it was the Hudson’s Bay Company’s principal Bay-side trading post and depot for over 250 years. The existing site of York Factory is the last of a series of three posts, the first of which was erected in 1684. Completed in 1792, York Factory III functioned as the principal depot and administrative center for the great Northern Department until the 1860s when its importance began to wane. It finally closed in 1957. Archaeological work at the site has revealed many structural features and associated artifacts including a large and varied assemblage of beads, mostly glass, which are the subject of this report.

Book, Video and DVD Reviews in Volume 25
Zhongguo gudai zhuzi (Chinese Ancient Beads), by Zhu Xiaoli, reviewed by Valerie Hector • Journal: Borneo International Beads Conference 2013, edited by Heidi Munan and Kay Margaret Lyons, reviewed by Karlis Karklins • Glass Beads: Selections from The Corning Museum of Glass, by Adrienne V. Gennett, reviewed by Gretchen Dunn.