Chung dZi

Ancient dZi Beads from 2500BC to 500AD


Various Chung dZi Beads

The following are natural beads and etched beads. Chung dZi or "Lesser" dZi is more commonly found, though still commands high prices these days especially the etched ones. All of these beads are in excess of 1000 years old and could range up to 4000 years.

Extremely old Phum dZi

This bead is one of the oldest kind of etched agate, maybe being around 3000 - 4000 years old. This one is in exceptional condition for its age and would have a value about US$3,500, though I have seen them sell on ebay for more.

27mm x 15mm.

Large Phum dZi bead

This Phum dZi is around 2000 years old. It is in exceptional condition and has a possible offering chip or damage on the other side(not shown) 31mm x 15mm

Approx value $3000.

Ancient One Stripe dZi

This single stripe Chung dZi has fabulous ageing marks on it and cold be up to 4000

years old, yet in amazing condition being complete in every respect. Because of its condition and extreme rarity it is maybe worth $1500-$2500. 25mm x 13mm.

Small, old natural spacer Chung dZi

These spacer beads are over 2000 years old and made from Sulemani(Soloman's)agate.

It is believed the material came from the fabled King Solomon's Mines. It shows wonderful aging marks all over it, but compared to other kinds of dZi, is relatively inexpensive having a value of about $50 - $60. 10mm x 14mm

Small, old natural spacer Chung dZi

These beads were used as spacers between two larger beads. Similar age, size and value to the other spacer beads.

Small, old natural spacer Chung dZi

Similar in size, shape, age and value to the other spacers.

Tiger Tooth Chung dZi

This bead has many "Blood spots" or Cinnabar spots. The Tibetans call these spots Martik. Sadly this one was broken when I found it and has been repaired, which detracts it's

value greatly. In undamaged condition it would be worth around $5000+

Natural, translucent, striped Chung dZi

This is a fabulous bead. When held to the light it has a stunning translucency. Probably

comes originally from India as it is unetched and has connections with Shiva followers, and was likely traded with the Tibetans, to whom it would be categorised as Chung dZi. 36mm x 12mm.

Worth $350-500.

Natural, translucent, striped Chung dZi

This bead is also believed to have connections to the Indian god Shiva. Similar in shape, size and value to the other Shiva bead above.

Etched 5 stripe Chung dZi

This bead shows some translucency when held to the light, and is likely to have originated in Mesopotamia, the region of modern day Afghanistan.

Around 1500 - 2000 years old.

22mm x 10 mm. $150 - $200

Very old 5 stripe Chung dZi

Similar to the above bead.

Etched 3 stripe Chung dZi

Possibly a Pyu bead from Burma.1800+ years old. 22mm x 10mm. $150.

Small etched 2 stripe Chung dZi

This bead was found in Nepal in 1981 and is much smaller than usual, being only 15mm x 6mm. Hard to value as it is totally unique, but over $150.

Etched "Earth, Sky, Heaven" Chung dZi

This bead has three segments, the darkest is Earth, the middle sky, and the nearest Heaven. This pattern occurs naturally too, as in the bead below.

$150-$220. 23mm x 10mm

Natural Earth, Sky, Heaven Chung dZi.

This one shows many Cinnabar blood spots. Hard to age but likely well over 1500 years. 22mm x 13mm.Surprisingly inexpensive having a market value of maybe $100.

Half natural, half etched Chung dZi.

The Tibetan I bought this from in 2001 had only recently escaped over the border from Tibet and brought this bead with him. It is called a Luk Mik or Goat's eye dZi. Only the left side has been etched, hence the graduated colour change. 16mm x 16mm. Extremely old, and covered with age marks.

2 pure dZi half beads.

Either of these beads, if complete, would have a value of a minimum of $12,000! The bead

on the right is so worn that the striping of the agate shows through the etching. I have seen

similar broken beads sell on ebay for $500 or more. My research leads me to believe these beads are at least 2500 years old, in spite of the "History of Beads" timeline stating they are from 700 AD!

Further inspection of the catalogue numbers in that book actually state the date of

manufacture as unknown.

Ancient Longevity or Turtle back dZi

This pattern resembles a turtle's shell, hence the belief that this bead bestows long life on the wearer. 17mm x 9mm. Regularly sells on ebay at $400 - $500.

Wonderful natural eye Chung dZi

The pattern on this bead is really exceptional, and the bead is shaped like an eye, fairly common among natural eye beads.

25mm x 14mm. Value $250.

Natural one eye Chung dZi

Fabulous naturally marked one eyed agate. 22mm x 14mm. Valued at $250.

Stunning translucent natural 12 eye Chung dZi

This bead is translucent and displays 12 natural eyes. A unique bead probably over 2000 years old. The chips look deliberate and are probably offerings. 33mm x 11mm. Unique and very

hard to value, maybe $500- $600.