n the beginning, soft metals such as copper, silver and gold were pounded into sheets. Then, as metallurgy advanced, wire was made by drawing narrow strips of very thin metal through holes in stone beads, causing the strip to curl into itself and form into a thin tube.
This technique, seen in 2nd Dynasty Egyptian jewelry, was followed by rolling these tubes between two flat surfaces, making a more solid wire. Wire was shaped and coiled by early artisans into a variety of designs. It was also affixed to metal sheets for even more variety. It was not until between the 8th and 10th centuries AD in the Western world that drawing wire as we know it was used to produce wire.
Spirals are found worldwide across all cultures. It is found on cave walls, pottery, and even in writing, as in this hieroglyph quail chick:
It is also one of the oldest designs in used jewelry. So, it comes as no surprise that some of the oldest pieces of metal jewelry contain coils as design elements.