skip to Main Content

The Past Life of Strings

At present, I am afraid that nothing can make people feel the “collection fever” sweeping the market in recent years than the different shapes and sizes of strings on people’s wrists. As an ancient civilization, the tradition of wearing jewelry has a long history in China, and has been given a rich social, cultural and religious connotation. According to “Han Fei Zi – Guan Xing”, “Ximen Bao is anxious, so he wears Wei to slow himself down; Dong An Yu is slow, so he wears string to make himself anxious. Therefore, to make up for the shortage with surplus, and to renew the short with long is called a clear master.” It means that a person who is slow in nature will wear bow and string ornaments to encourage himself, because bow and string means tense; a person who is impatient in nature will wear cowhide or cloth ornaments to warn himself, because cowhide means soothing. Therefore, the anxious Simon Pao wears cowhide, while the slow nature of Dong An Yu wears bowstring.


And specifically to the origin of the string, the more common saying is that it originated from the Buddha beads, whose history can be traced back to the Six Dynasties period. Buddha beads are divided into three forms, namely hanging beads, wearing beads, holding beads. The large ones are hung on the neck and chest, called hanging beads; the medium ones are worn on the wrist or arm, called pearl; the small ones are held in the palm, called holding beads, and also called nianzhu.


After a long period of evolution, to the Qing dynasty up to the emperor down to the fifth grade civil officials, military officials above the fourth grade officials are allowed to wear beads. Dynasty beads is the development of the Buddhist number beads, the ancestors of the Qing Dynasty emperors believed in Buddhism, Sanskrit called Manchuria for “Manjush” of the transcription, Buddhists to the Qing Dynasty emperors have “Manjushri” the great emperor’s name. Today, the string has become widely popular and has entered the common people’s home. From the function, it has also broken through the traditional meaning, adding multiple functions such as decoration, playing and investment, and has become a kind of collection with a very wide audience.

Back To Top