A Journey to the Past: Exploring Some of the Oldest Jewelry Ever Discovered

Posted by Lita Sea Glass Jewelry on 4th Oct 2017

Jewelry has long been used to adorn the human body. While the numerous types of sea glass earrings and sea glass charm designs available to us today may not have existed centuries ago, other materials did. Here, we'll take a quick look at some of the oldest jewelry ever discovered from ancient civilizations around the world.


In 2013, a professor heading the Neanderthal Collection from a site in Krapina discovered something amazing when taking a closer look at some eagle talons. Numerous cut marks and holes in the talons meant that they were undoubtedly strung together in some fashion to make jewelry. Not only did this change history's perception of Neanderthals, it gave us a better idea of just how important ornamentation was before modern humans arrived.


It's well known that some of the oldest jewelry ever found was dated back almost 100,000 years. But did you know that many of these pieces were made using Nassarius sea snail shells? These beads were first found in Israel and are believed to be the first known jewelry created by modern humans.


Until recently, it was believed that jewelry found on the site of Enkapune Ya Muto in Kenya was the oldest jewelry discovered. The beads on this piece of jewelry date back almost 40,000 years and are made of polished ostrich egg shells.


It's no secret that ancient Egypt was a culture obsessed with ornamentation. This ancient kingdom houses perhaps some of the most famous ancient jewelry out there, and they used glass to create a lot of it! Aside from silver, glass was abundantly used in jewelry. Not only did it give Egypt a unique jewelry style, it allowed for more creative liberty in bead creation.

As you can see, jewelry has a long and rich history. Although different types of sea glass earrings and jewelry didn't emerge until recently, it's clear that ancient jewelry makers were no slouches! If there's one thing that ties us to our ancient predecessors, it's a love of creativity and artwork in the form of jewelry.