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Thirteen-Hundred-Year-Old Bead Adornments from Baar, Canton Zug, Switzerland

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In the year 2000, an Early Medieval (7th-century) cemetery containing more than 200 burials with rich grave goods was discovered in Baar, Canton Zug, Switzerland. Thanks to the painstaking methods used in the excavation and recording of the 2,985 glass, amber, coral, and amethyst beads found with the female burials, it was possible to reconstruct the necklaces and sewn-on appliqués they were part of. Comparisons with mosaic depictions of famous women—such as the Empress Theodora in San Vitale in Ravenna, Italy—suggest that the people of Baar imitated southern Alpine Byzantine bead jewelry fashion.

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The Society of Bead Researchers is a non-profit scientific-educational corporation founded in 1981 to foster historical, archaeological, and material cultural research on beads and beadwork of all materials and periods, and to expedite the dissemination of the resultant knowledge. Membership is open to all persons involved in the study of beads, as well as those interested in keeping abreast of current trends in bead research.

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