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You almost lost me at Lady Godiva fingering her stones.

Thanks for the link...I had read something recently on the Desert Fathers which made me want to read back through some of the original sources developing church theology.


Anybody who could ride naked through a medieval village has GOT to have 'em.

Chris Laning

Do note that the custom of saying a certain number of prayers (fifty, 150 or whatever) doesn't necessarily imply the use of _beads_ to count them. The prayers could just as well have been counted by making marks in the dirt, moving pebbles from one heap to another, counting on one's fingers and so forth. The fact that beads are commonly used for this today sometimes leads people to jump to the conclusion that they were also used in the past when, in fact, there isn't necessarily evidence for it. As far as I know, the earliest surviving, securely dated Christian prayer beads currently known seem to date from the 13th century, although there's certainly documentary evidence for them earlier.

If I may modestly say so here, I recommend the Paternoster Row website and the Paternosters Blog for further information.


You forgot
"1955: First glow-in-the-dark rosarys produced"
"1986: Madonna wears rosary as jewelry."

kudzu fire

Beaded justice.




C. 1075 Lady Godiva (yes, the Lady Godiva) refers in her will to”the circlet of precious stones which she had threaded on a cord in order that by fingering them one after another she might count her prayers exactly”.

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