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Beads

MOA: University of British Columbia

3383/12

Trade beads strung together on a clear plastic cord. The beads are ellipsoidal-shaped with lengthwise grooves.

  • Narrative

    According to the donor, the Asmat objects in this accession (3383/1-12), as well as one other carving sold to MOA in 1990 (1481/1), were collected by an explorer named Jim Allen during two trips: one in the spring of 1989, the other in the fall of 1989. On the second expedition they explored the remote Asmat territories of the upper Brazza and Senggo, by hiking down from the highlands.

  • History Of Use

    Referred to by the donor as "Portuguese trade beads"; thought to have been brought to islands such as New Guinea by European ships. Traditionally used for bride price and other transactions by groups such as the Asmat.


  • Type of Item bead
  • Culture Asmat
  • Material glass, plastic
  • Measurements height 41.8 cm, width 8.5 cm, depth 2.0 cm (overall)

  • Previous Owner Jim Allen, Joanne Fallow
  • Received from Joanne Fallow

  • Made in Portugal
  • Collected in Papua

  • Collection Date during 1989
  • Ownership Date before August 21, 2019
  • Acquisition Date on August 21, 2019

  • Condition fair
  • Accession Number 3383/0012