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You are here: Home > dZi & other Ancient, Antique & Rare Beads > Pema Raka Beads


Here you will find ancient and antique Pema Raka (also Pema Raga) carnelian beads. The Tibetan name Pema Raka originates from the sanskrit words Padma meaning Lotus flower and Rakta meaning red or blood -- and so we have a translation of blood lotus or red lotus. Pema Raka beads range from orange to deep red in colour and come in a variety of shapes. They might also display crystalline banding and natural eyes. It is interesting to note that this name is also given to rubies in both the Tibetan Materia Medica and Indian Ayurvedic texts. Tibetan texts also mention that there are nine varieties of ruby. In Tibetan medicine the Pema Raka is believed to protect from evil spirits and to absorb illnesses.

It has been suggested that the majority of Pema Raka are unlikely to be more than 300 years old (+ or -) and are of Chinese origin (still unproven). However, there is also a widely held belief that some Pema Raka could be as much as 2000 years old, and traded to Tibet from Afghanistan or central Asia. The great weathering and wear at the perforations does point to a much earlier period for some beads. In our opinion there are clearly different periods of manufacture with some being ancient and others being antique. Whether the carnelian is from the same source also needs more investigation. Since Pema Raka are used as an ingredient in Tibetan medicine, it is likely they have been in circulation since at least the 12th century. Pema Raka beads are not to be confused with the more recent Indian made carnelians that are mistakenly called Pema Raka.
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Antique Pema Raka
3 Antique Pema Raka
Our Price: £350.00

Three Pema Raka carnelian beads with weathering commensurate with age. You will receive the exact beads shown. One of the beads displays a very rare natural eye.

longest 24 mm
smallest 22.5 mm
Prized in Tibet and the Himalayan regions
300 years to ancient
Condition: Good robust beads with some weathering and surface fissures that is common with these beads.
Antique Pema Raka
3 Antique Pema Raka
Our Price: £150.00

Three Pema Raka carnelian beads with weathering and patina commensurate with age. You will receive the exact beads shown.

smallest 22 mm x 11 mm
largest 24 mm x 11 mm
Prized in Tibet and the Himalayan regions
300 years to ancient
Condition: Good robust beads with some weathering.
Antique Pema Raka
3 Antique Pema Raka
Our Price: £150.00

Three Pema Raka carnelian beads with weathering commensurate with age. You will receive the exact beads shown.

approx 18 to 19 mm
Prized in Tibet and the Himalayan regions
300 years to ancient
Condition: Good robust beads with some weathering and surface fissures that is common with these beads.
Antique Pema Raka with turquoise
Antique Pema Raka with turquoise
Our Price: £125.00

A lovely antique Pema Raka carnelian bead flanked by two antique turquoise beads.

approx 26 mm x 15 mm
Prized in Tibet and the Himalayan regions
Age: 300 years
Condition: Very good
Antique Pema Raka
Antique Pema Raka
Our Price: £80.00

A wonderful Pema Raka carnelian bead with fine usage patina.

24 mm x 13 mm
Prized in Tibet and the Himalayan regions
300 years to ancient
Condition: Very Good with some weathering.
Antique Pema Raka
Antique Pema Raka
Our Price: £70.00

A wonderful Pema Raka carnelian bead with fine usage patina.

21 mm x 15 mm
Prized in Tibet and the Himalayan regions
300 years to ancient
Condition: Good with some weathering and surface fissures
Antique Pema Raka
Huge Antique Pema Raka

SOLD!

An incredibly large antique Pema Raka carnelian bead with weathering commensurate with age. The 1st photo shows a round bead that is 10 mm in size for comparison. Pema Raka are prized in Tibet for personal adornment and as a medicinal ingredient.

59 mm to 39 mm
300 years to ancient
Condition: A good robust bead with some weathering and a wonderful usage patina.
Pema Raka & Turquoise Necklace
Rare Pema Raka & Turquoise Necklace

SOLD!

A wonderful collection of authentic Tibetan Pema Raka and antique Tibetan turquoise. There are a total of 10 Pema Raka all displaying a very desirable usage patina. Many of these carnelians are likely to be ancient and beads of this quality have almost vanished from the marketplace. In recent years they have become one of the most sought after Himalayan beads in and outside of Asia. There are a total of 15 antique turquoise beads that really complement the carnelian. All are beautiful well kept beads.

smallest 21 mm x 12 mm
largest 34 mm x 16 mm
length of strand approx 18 inches
Prized in Tibet and the Himalayan regions 300 years to ancient
Condition: Very Good robust beads with some weathering commensurate with age.
Antique Pema Raka
3 Antique Pema Raka

SOLD!

Three Pema Raka carnelian beads with weathering commensurate with age. You will receive the exact beads shown. largest approx 27 mm to 14 mm smallest 23 mm x 14 mm Prized in Tibet and the Himalayan regions 300 years to ancient Condition: Good robust beads with some weathering and surface fissures that is common with these beads.
Antique Pema Raka with turquoise
Antique Pema Raka with turquoise

SOLD!

A lovely antique Pema Raka carnelian bead flanked by two antique turquoise beads.

approx 21 mm x 15 mm
Prized in Tibet and the Himalayan regions
Age: 300 years to ancient
Condition: Very good
Antique Pema Raka
3 Antique Pema Raka

SOLD!

Three Pema Raka carnelian beads with weathering and patina commensurate with age. You will receive the exact beads shown.

smallest 23 mm x 13.5 mm largest 24 mm x 14 mm Prized in Tibet and the Himalayan regions 300 years to ancient Condition: Good robust beads with some weathering.