I found this amazing bead in a small shop in Rome that was stuffed to the brim with beads, findings, and other jewelry supplies. I got to talking to the owners and they brought me into the back to show me the "archives," an amazing collection of pins and other pieces they had made for fashion houses in the 1960s, the heyday of Italian costume jewelry.
The bead is 2 5/8 inches long, by about an inch or more across. Aside from a little roughness around the hole on one side, the condition is excellent. The color is a deep and compelling green with a hint of blue that draws your eye into its layers of translucence.
I've never seen another one like this. Don't let it get away!