Do you know what a Abrus precatorius is?
The plant is best known for its seeds, which are used as beads and in percussion instruments, and which are toxic due to the presence of abrin, the poison similar with ricin, one of the most powerful natural poisons in the world. However, abrin is even more toxic.
The seeds of Abrus precatorius are much valued in native jewelry for their bright coloration. Most beans are black and red, suggesting a ladybug or bull eye. In Trinidad in the West Indies the brightly coloured seeds are strung into bracelets and worn around the wrist or ankle to ward off jumbies or evil spirits and “mal-yeux” – the evil eye. The Tamils use Abrus seeds of different colors. The red variety with black eye is the most common, but there are black, white and green varieties as well.
That was an introduction. The story itself happened when I received the nice package from Ethiopia. I opened it and found there a present – one kilo vivid red and black seed beads of abrus_precatorius!
– Where have you got it from? – I asked a presenter.
– Children were selling it on the roadside. I thought, you might like it. – Yeah, well, I really liked it! :)
My first wish was to trash it immediately. But how could I do that? So, I asked beautiful Rivka to pose me wearing this one-kilo-beads necklace for the shooting for my TravelLab Shop and after that I’m going to frame it and put it on the wall.
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