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Navigating the past through glass beads

When: Tuesday, 01 February 2022 - Thursday, 31 March 2022
Where: Origins Centre
Braamfontein Campus East
Start time:9:00

Navigating the past through glass beads: Global trade in southern and eastern Africa, 600 CE to present.

Through this exhibition, the Origins Centre presents the deep history of trade between city states on the East African coast, and the entrepots of southeast Asia, the Middle East and China, with links to the evolving societies of the Shashi Limpopo Confluence area, and later at Mapungubwe and Great Zimbabwe. The displays feature trade beads excavated from sites in the interior of southern Africa including Shroda, K2 and Mapungubwe, as well as donations and presentations made in the 1930s and 1940s of glass beads recovered from excavations in middle and upper Egypt, and other international locations. The chemical signature of early trade beads provides information about trade routes and sites of manufacture, and assists archaeologists to determine occupation dates for excavated sites. Original beads from the Wits Archaeology Collection are on display for the duration of the exhibition. This exhibition is funded by the National Institute for the Humanities and Social Sciences.

Navigating the past through glass beads

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