Belt of glass beads

The raw materials for the production of jewellery and other accessories, which could not be found locally, were traded in. The Naga merchants conducted a lively trade in the form of barter or on a monetary basis, depending on the object of the transaction. According to travel accounts, in the early 20th century Angami traders regularly travelled to Calcutta and Varanasi to buy ivory, cowrie and turbinella shells and beads for the local market. 

Such belts were usually worn over a skirt and are a sign of wealth, as beads and jewellery are the only form of personal wealth for women. This belt consists of numerous strands of strung beads, which are kept in shape by narrow bone struts. At both ends the linen threads are woven and braided, a small shell serves as a clasp.

Object Belt of glass beads
Culture Konyak-Naga, East India/West-Burma
Time 19th century
Dimensions Length 75 cm
Material Glass beads, bone, linen, shell
Supplementing Literature Back to room view