God Has Many Names
Islamic tespih (TESS-peehh: "rosaries,"
or prayer beads) usually have
99 beads, one for each of the
99 sobriquets (names) of Allah.
(Some have 1/3 of 99, or 33
In Ottoman times, tespih were
made from fragrant woods, amber,
mother-of-pearl, and precious
metals such as gold and silver. Tespih for
the rich were fine works of art
that might take months to make.
Today tespih are
mostly made of plastic, glass
and base metal.
But they still
make a fine window display (as
in this shop on Istanbul's Uzunçarşı
has no fewer names than in olden