There is no doubt I shall need to go back to the British Museum on many more occasions to really rootle around and discover its treasures. Even on this fleeting visit though I was able to appreciate just what an amazing resource it is for anyone, like me, who has a fascination for the beliefs people have held throughout civilisation [not always civilised beliefs sadly...some things haven't changed sigh] and how artifacts can be used politically to reflect the transition period from one set to another. One such example is the "star of David" which is seen in the centre of one of the silver Roman dishes from the Mildenhall hoard. It was not adopted by the Jews until the post medieval period. Anyway I digress...less nattering more piccies methinks!
This is a neolithic red deer headdress complete with eye holes. Most likely to have been used for a shamanic ritual of some sort. 8000 BC found at Starr Carr, Yorkshire.
A late neolithic pottery figure found in Serbia. Possibly a household deity.
A Roman pot dedicated to the God Mercury....a rather kindly depiction I have to say!
The Franks Casket. Made of whalebone this Saxon piece demonstrates the changeover from Paganism to Christianity. It has both Latin and Runic inscriptions alongside carvings that represent both legends, historical events and Biblical references.
A monk's head from a medieval glazed pot. Love the tonsure!
Finally in sharp contrast Dr John Dee famous in the court of Elizabeth I both as a scientist and occultist. These are his accoutrements- incredibly the discs are made of wax and are engraved with magical names, symbols and signs.
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