amber and bone rosary

October 16, 2010: Medieval rosaries were frequently made from bone beads. The first two pictures below show the making of wooden or bone paternoster beads: The beads were drilled from cheap animal bones. Many leftovers of the bone bead production were found in Konstanz. The rosary in the last picture might be made from small wooden and large, white bone beads.

paternoster maker paternoster maker bone waste St. Jodok

wooden or bone paternoster beads

I found nice, slightly irregular-shaped (thus looking more hand-made) bone and amber beads for this paternoster. I made a thin 4-loop fingerloop cord from very fine silk thread for the beads. For the coral and rock crystal rosary I had used only a simple silk thread - of course it ripped and I had to restring the beads (or the ones I managed to find again). I think the fingerloop cord should last a lot longer! I added a tassel made with thicker silk thread in the same color.

bone and amber rosary bone and amber rosary bone and amber rosary bettina and karsten

my rosary with bone and amber beads

(bettina, october 2010)