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 Post subject: FleaBay Archeology
PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 8:44 am 
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Just take a look and drop a line:

What do you make of THIS strange object? :? Even the seller does not know, and judging by the descriptions lavished on other items they know allot.

Even as a fake it would be unusual!

Image

The only pace the making of the ring fits among my 'records' would be among German religious paraphernalia produced around 1100, a hundred years give or take (wasn't history slower!). But that, just because of the habit of wrapping things in heavy gold sheet without much refinement bonding it to the substrate. I still need to research the image - which so far suggests a through back to earlier Chrstianity: the story of the burning bush, with Diane's crescent thrown in for political correctness first, then just by habit for century or two... in the less strict doctrine of informal art. :roll:

Whatever the story, there seems to be wear. Those must have been huge hands!... with flat fingers? Or is it even a finger ring...

Anyway. 'Thought it is a more legitimate curiosity then the toad hair usually touted on the venue. :o


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 10:30 am 
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Valeria,

I have posted pics of the image on a religious form I am on. We have a number of members who specialize in esoteric, rare, unusual and strange symbols within christendom. If I receive any comments I'll pass them on to you.

Jason

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 11:53 am 
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I love the "solid 22K gold....probably over bronze" .
Where's a lightning bolt when you need one?


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 12:15 pm 
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See, now I'd jump on that in a New York minute, even at a bit above the current bid if I trusted that it was legit... I'd love to have something like that. Anyone know the seller and is familiar with their return policies?


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 3:02 pm 
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I am very skeptical and would want a lot of trackable provenance information.

While it could be very old, it could also easily be a modern object made through the process of electroforming. That's what it immediately reminded me of.

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 3:10 pm 
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HI gem-n00b,

i thought it was an intresting piece but i took the advice from a very smart man :wink: and i toolhaus.org the seller , lots of negative and unrecieved items, if you take a chance ,everyone states get INSURANCE ,
i wouldnt pay the price they want for the piece but it is interesting :roll:
DragonStek


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 3:10 pm 
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Valeria,

So far no real leads on the other forum I mentioned. However, I am quite competent when it comes to Christian iconography (both east and west) and I can say with strong certainty, this is NOT a Christian image. In fact, I would venture to guess that, if this is not a fake or repro, it is quite a bit older than the 12th century.

I feel like this is probably a North African piece, perhaps Ethiopian.

On the other hand, if I dare make this suggestion, the image is quite consonant with Asherah, the semitic goddess of fertility. Two of her symbols are the crescent moon and a field of stars. A possible third image on the piece is what may be a bull's horn protruding upward from the left of her knee. IF it is a bulls horn, that is also an indicator that this is Asherah. That would place this piece in the middle east probably not later than the 2nd or 3rd century AD...perhaps MUCH earlier as Asherah was worshipped in that region for at least 2000 years BC.

These suggestions are pure speculation and I am ready to be corrected.

Jason

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 3:35 pm 
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Hi,

It's a fake.

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 4:49 pm 
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Care to enlighten the rest of us as to what shows you that it's a fake? Not all of us are quite as bright as you are Doos. :lol:


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2008 11:26 am 
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Glad to hear the word 'fake'! :o I would be surprised if it wasn't.

Wonder who, why and where bothers to produce such reasoned fakes ... This one looks like a product of experimental archeology already.

What looks like electroform to you, ROM?

Thank you for the hint, Jason! Where would you go to authenticate something like that? Middle-eastern gold work draws a blank. For example, the local museum and others in the region are useful for Thracian gold, and often a first opinion comes free, with submissions encouraged as part of the authorities' effort to curve illegal trade in historic objects. As usual, many buyers (let alone sellers) do not go through that minimal due-diligence... :x


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2008 11:54 am 
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Valeria,

I'm not an expert in Middle eastern antiquities...but I would probably send pictures of the ring to the Archaeology Department at Hebrew University in Jerusalem. I would think someone there could point in the right direction.

Even if the thing is fake per Doos, it seems to have been copied from an original. It's very convincing as far as the artwork goes. Whether the piece is put together well or not I'll leave to the jewelry makers among us. But i'm dying to know where it came from! LOL this kind of thing just fascinates me to death.

Notice the clothing on the figure...it's very consonant with Hebrew and I assume, other middle eastern clothing from very early on. It almost appears to be Greek clothing, but the rest of the symbolism doesn't really scream Greek to me. Also it appears that the figure is wearing a helmet with a nose guard. Either that or he/she/it has a very large/long nose. This is what initially made me think Ethiopia. But if it's a nose guard it could well be semitic. Can't say I have ever seen Asherah in a helmet before.

J

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2008 12:42 pm 
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valeria102 wrote:

What looks like electroform to you, ROM?


That was just a snap reaction, Val. Electroformed objects tend to have a characteristic "puffy" oversized look. I also said it could well be authentic but I'd need a lot more in the way of provenance before buying. The opinion of someone like Barbra, who works daily with antique pieces, would be much more informed than mine. Jason's input on design history is fascinating: you are a man of many parts, Jason.

I see no evidence of actual finger wear inside the ring, nor on its top. If real, the piece could have been ceremonial and not intended for actual wear, of course.

The presence of what appears to be a seam inside the shank is interesting and might argue for some kind of gold foil overlay technique. I'd want to put those split areas on the shank under a microscope to try to determine what the underlying material is, as well as those white areas beneath the gold. The nature of the "core" or "armature" could be a helpful clue in authenticating the piece.

I wonder how the seller can say the overlay is 22 K gold? Was it given the "acid test?" or was that the karat of the plating solution? Overall, the description by the seller requires that buyers take a lot on faith. There's no discussion of where it came from or why the seller believes it to be "ancient." Without a lot more information I remain skeptical.

Are you thinking of buyin this piece? If you do, please let us know what your post-purchase testing reveals.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2008 4:07 pm 
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C'mon Doos, enlighten us please... :)


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2008 6:39 pm 
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I guess I don't have the archeological background to see the antiquity and art of this object which unfortunately looks like a "kerchief" or neck scarf slide decorated with a nursery rhyme character. yes, I am curious also as to what and when.

:)

Jim


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2008 9:33 pm 
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To me, the band appears to have been cut from an existing circular item rather than fabricated for this piece.

The head or bezel appears to have been cut from something else, as well, as you can see that some images are incomplete. It appears that's the "oldest" part of this thing and the rest was fabricated to "complement" it and wrapped with gold.

Maybe it was made up for a play. :smt112

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