By the Hellenistic period (323-27 BC) colours slowly became an important aspect of Greek jewellery. To achieve colour, gold was often combined with gemstones. Garnets were the most popular, but emeralds, carnelian, rock crystal, agates, onyxes or lapis-lazuli were also used. Gemstones were pierced, cut, abraded and polished like in this case, or left as a natural crystal. The Greek were renowned for their art of gem carving.
Coloured glass was also used in imitation of stone. In this necklace, glass was used to imitated onyx and pearl.
Necklaces were generally worn tight around the neck, like a modern choker or ribbon, or in a looser fashion at the base of the neck. This necklace was tied at the back by means of a cord. They were often worn in multiples, especially a necklace with simple beads with one of more complex form like this one.