Mechanisms of production and exchange: Early prehistoric perforated bead production and use in Southwest Wales

George Nash*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This article is the result of the recovery of exotic items from a recent (November 2010) excavation at a littleknown, partly buried standing stone (or menhir) at Trefael in southwest Wales. The excavation followed a geophysical survey of the site that revealed that the standing stone originally formed the capstone of probable Portal Dolmen, one of western Britain's earliest burial-ritual monument types. The rationale for the excavation was to reveal anomalies that were recorded during the geophysical survey. The excavation recovered from within a disturbed cairn two perforated mudstone beads along with severalother artifacts. The beads appear to be similar to beads found elsewhere in southwest Wales, in particular the Mesolithic coastal site of Nab Head, and raise some important questions concerning manufacture, provenance, and use-were they merely decoration or items of symbolism and prestige? I suggest that such items gain prestige or sacredness during the different processes they undergo that include sourcing, collection, manufacture, exchange, distribution, and use.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)73-84
Number of pages12
JournalTime and Mind
Volume5
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2012

Keywords

  • Adornment
  • Beads
  • Display
  • Ritualized
  • Sacredness

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Mechanisms of production and exchange: Early prehistoric perforated bead production and use in Southwest Wales'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this