These 35″ long vintage Fulani ceremony tube trade beads, also known as ceremony beads are traditionally worn by the Fulani people of Nigeria who make up one of the largest nomadic ethnic groups in the world. Each tube bead is a different shade of Russian blue, some matte finish, shiny, opaque and transparent. Their small chips and corrosion denotes their age, Originally made in Europe some time in 1800s.
Trade Beads are beads that have been used as a form of currency for the exchange of goods and services especially in West Africa. Some of the more common items that these beads were bartered for include ivory, gold, slaves, and other goods that were in demand by Europeans and colonial overlords.
The high demand for European beads in Africa can be attributed to the cultural value put by African peoples on decorative items. Jewelry items could add to the status of the owner and could be passed on to future generations as a symbol of wealth.
These beads have moved between continents, countries and owners for decades. Imperfections are possible and only add to the character.