Vintage Islamic Red Czech Bead Necklace
This is a necklace made of what is known in trade bead circles as Haji beads. The story is that people, decades ago, acquired this type of necklace as a souvenir when they made the pilgrimage or Haj.
I have not found any confirmation for this theory. The beads are Czech glass and are engraved with Arabic writing and then color is applied to the engravings. The small beads have Muhammed written on them. The big ones have Allah on one side and writing سلامة فاكي in a language that is not Arabic on the other. The language may be Urdu and may have something to do with safety. The shield shape of the big beads is Persian in origin, but I have found one reference to them in Saad Al Jadir's book Arab and Islamic Silver as Pakistani. I've also seen them in Istanbul's antique market referred to as either Pakistani or Afghani.
The beads are strung on nylon wire and the necklace has no closure, it is rather slipped on. This necklace is in good vintage condition, though the color of the writing has faded on some of the beads.
- Length is 66 cm (26").
- The big beads measure 2.5 x 3 cm (1 x 1 1/4").