Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 40.djvu/61

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51
DRESS AND ADORNMENT.

copied in glass and metals. Glass beads have gone the world over. They have replaced many old materials, and have wrought great changes in many lines of aboriginal art work. But, there are beads and beads!

PSM V40 D061 Bird of paradise head dress.jpg
Fig. 8. — Head-dress of Bird-of-Paradise Feathers. South Sea Islands.

Fashion changes as often among savages as with ourselves, and the bead so highly prized today may be worthless to-morrow. In Africa iron beads are always good, but glass beads fluctuate. One author tells us "they prefer as beads the 'mandyoor' — long polyhedral prisms as large as a bean and as blue as lapis lazuli." But woe to the trader who took a stock of mandyoor there to-day! They might be a drug on the market. It may seem as if we have been too detailed in describing all these savage and barbaric decorations. We have simply aimed to show how varied in material and how diversified in form and use such ornaments may be. To show the profusion of ornament worn in some cases, and to illustrate the amount of discomfort which one will willingly endure for the sake of display, we quote a few descriptions:

Livingstone describes the sister of chief Sebatuane as "wearing eighteen solid brass rings as thick as one's finger on each leg; three of copper under each knee; nineteen brass rings on the right arm; eight of brass and copper on the left arm, and a large ivory ring above each elbow. She had a heavy bead sash around her waist and a bead necklace. The weight of rings upon