Egyptian Antiquities in the Petrie Museum of Egyptology, London

Established in 1892 primarily as a teaching tool for the new Department of Egyptology, University College‚Äôs Petrie Museum of Egyptology is tucked away in a rather obscure location off Gower Street. Were it not for a few colorful banners pointing the way, it would be difficult to find. Visiting hours are quite limited. Started with… Read More Egyptian Antiquities in the Petrie Museum of Egyptology, London

Every Coin Tells a Story…Some More than Others

The silver coin pictured here, a “Tram” of the Cilician Armenian ruler Levon I, is a survivor from a rather remarkable episode in the Medieval history of the Eastern Mediterranean. Our story begins far to the east, with the conquest of much of the Middle East by the Seljuk Turks. Fleeing their original homelands in… Read More Every Coin Tells a Story…Some More than Others

Byzantine Pottery Oil Lamps from the Levant

Many of the ancient lamps on our website are Byzantine, mainly from the Levant (what is now southern Turkey, Lebanon, Syria, Israel / Palestine). Unlike Roman hard fired ceramic red slip lamps of earlier centuries, Byzantine lamps tend to be made from low fired pottery and their designs reflect Christian symbolism. In the Roman period,… Read More Byzantine Pottery Oil Lamps from the Levant

A Byzantine St Menas Flask and Spiritual Continuity in Egypt

Political and social turmoil is still very much in evidence in Egypt today, 16 months after Mubarak’s departure and 1 year after Morsi’s election as Egypt’s President. Some of this unrest has had religious overtones, involving friction between Egypt’s ancient Coptic community, now numbering perhaps 10% of the population or 8 million persons, and some… Read More A Byzantine St Menas Flask and Spiritual Continuity in Egypt

Egyptian Faience Production and a Skullcap of Ptah on Our Website

One of the more extraordinary objects offered on our website is a Late Dynastic Egyptian blue skullcap detached from a statuette of the god Ptah. It may be viewed here: http://www.clioancientart.com/catalog/i11.html. We have described this antiquity as being made of “frit” — a term sometimes but erroneously used interchangeably for faience. But why did we… Read More Egyptian Faience Production and a Skullcap of Ptah on Our Website

Iranian Antiquities in the Current Political Context

International political affairs often interfere with normal processes of cultural exchange. There can hardly be a better example than the current situation in relation to Iran. Severe trade restrictions or total embargoes on trade with that country have had the unfortunate impact of also restricting trade between other nations on goods of Iranian origin, including… Read More Iranian Antiquities in the Current Political Context