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rosary workshop - Museum - 20c glowbeads
GLOWBEAD ROSARIES
glow in the dark rosaries - 'light bringers'

PHOSPHORUS, WHAT IS IT?
The word phosphorus is from the greek word, 'phosphoras' which means 'Bringer of Light' or 'Light Bringer'. It was discovered in 1669 by Henning Brand of Germany.  It is a non-metalic element and is found thorughout nature.  Many rocks and soil contain phosphors and it is found in water. It is vital for living systems and is the backbone of the life coded DNA.
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MOVING SLOWLY UP THE TRAIL
The bishop of Peru shared on EWTN how he loved watching the people on their nightly walk up the mountain to attend Mass the next morning.  With their rosaries around their necks or in their hands, you could see the long line of glowing beads moving slowly upward along the mountain trail.

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ABOUT GLOWBEADS
FACETED BEADS    -    OVAL BEADS



~ ABOUT GLOW BEADS ~

We do not know very much about glow beads other than they have a wonderful history. We know they are made of plastic and come secured to a cord, strung on cord and are sometimes chained.  The beads are plastic and contain phosphorus so that when exposed to light, they will glow in the dark.  Popular for use at night so they could be found in bed! 
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NAUGHTY OR NICE!
An old tale suggested that if the rosary did not glow it was because you ad been naughty (in sin) and when it glowed brightly you had been nice (free of sin)! This brought great glee to children and peace to their parents!
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ABOUT PHOSPHOR AND PLASTIC
Barbara Spear wrote: I did some research and asked a few scientific-type friends to help date when phosphor was added to plastic. Celluloid was the first "plastic" and that was invented in 1869. Bakelite was introduced in 1907. Gutta percha predates both, but it was more of a resin. Haven't been able to get dates yet on the plastic as we know it or the use of phosphor in it. Glow toys were introduced in the late 1950s. I don't think radium was ever added to plastic--that was the radioactive substance first used to make things like watch faces and hands glow. Unlike phosphor which requires exposure to a light source, the radium disturbed the molecular structure enough to give items a perpetual glow even without exposure to light.




~ FACETED GLOW BEADS ~

CONFIGURATION
The rosary at the top of the page is the standard 5 decade rosary. Below you can see the cross of that rosaryOverall length - 11.5 inches from the apex of the beads to the base of the crucifix.  The faceted Beige Ave beads are 7mm in size and have been strung.  The Pater beads are black. Molded plastic.
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CRUCIFIX 
ABOVE: obverse -  top: 1st day novena - left: 2nd day novena bottom: 3rd day novena - right: 4th day novena reverse - '54 day novena - 3 novenas in petition - 3 novenas in thanksgiving"
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CENTER
'ROSARY ARMY'
BELOW: This oval disk clearly lists the day for each mystery to be prayed on both sides: obverse -  Joyful, Sorrowful Mysteries ... reverse -  Glorious Mysteries
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From the private collection of Barbar Spear. Visit Barbara on line at
'The Yankee Lady', an antique dealer

 


~ OVAL GLOW BEADS ~

CONFIGURATION

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CLOSE UP OF BEADS
Rosary is 30 inches long from tip of crucifix pendant  to center back of circle.  Each molded plastic bead is .5 in long and connected with a chain link.  The rosary center and corpus are of base metal, while the crucifix is of glow-plastic.
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private collection - not for sale
 
... ABOUT GLOW BEADS ...
Last time I had my hair cut, I was "talking Rosaries" with my hairdresser, a good friend.  She stopped trimming, smiled at me in the mirror, and said, "Of all the rosaries I've ever had, the one I love the most is one my aunt gave me. It has beads that glow in the dark. I've had it since I was a little girl, and I still have it." Ann Madison - Atelier Beads (USA) 
(visit Ann on the internet)
 

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ANTIQUE ROSRY MUSEUM INDEX
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