Woman's Paternoster Prayer Beads, Middle Ages Style
Paternosters are the forerunner of today's rosary beads, used extensively throughout the Middle Ages. The beads were used to keep track of the number of times the Lord's Prayer (known as the Our Father prayer) was said - Pater Noster is Latin for Our Father.
This set brings design details of historic paternosters to life again, using modern materials and techniques. Made with 10mm round picasso jasper beads and charoite nuggets, the paternoster can be worn on a belt as was common in olden days.
There are two sets of 10 prayer beads on each side, with a length of the cord kept free for hanging over a belt or on the buckle. Each side has a single gaud (Our Father bead), which is a handcut nugget of charoite, a lovely purple stone shot through with black matrix.
At one end is an ornately engraved pewter crucifix and at the other end is a long silky pink tassel. Highly decorated pewter beads complete the design. Historic paternosters were larger than the modern rosary, and this set has a nice weight and substantial feel to it.
Overall length: 56cm / 22 inches;
Cross: 7.5cm / 3 inches tall, hollow back;
Tassel: 8cm / 3.1 inches long.
The style of this set is like those worn by the middle class of society, perhaps a merchant or teacher's wife would have worn a similar rosary.
This small set of prayer beads is both a pleasure to use and delightful to look at. It comes in a handmade renaissance style pouch and will be attractively packaged.
The 19 year old woman in this painting
from 1548 wears a paternoster attached to her
belt at the ornate buckle.
My paternoster has a place in the middle of the
thread where the belt or buckle can sit.
Small knots either side stop the beads from
slipping over the belt.
See more of my Renaissance revival Collection here.