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Photographs of some historical & archeological artifacts

Michael Faraday's chemical chest, 19th century.
The end of Darwin's walking stick.
Galileo’s original telescope.
Napoleon’s toothbrush, c 1795 (with engraved "N“ at bottom).
Carved Olive Pit, China (1737).
Throne of Charlemagne (790). Until 1531, it served as the coronation throne the Kings of Germany, being used at a total of thirty-one coronations.
Ishtar Gate, ca 575 BC. Built on the orders of Nebuchadnezzar II, it was a gate to the inner city of Babylon.
Tolkien's service weapon from WWI.
Breastplate, North Peru - A.D. 1000/1470. [more inside]
posted by growabrain on Apr 27, 2014 - 33 comments

It's Warhol, actually. It's "hole." As in "holes." Andy Warhol.

Did you know that there's an art museum on the moon? A tiny, tiny one. The Moon Museum features works by Forrest "Frosty" Myers (the instigator), Robert Rauschenberg, Claes Oldenburg, Andy Warhol, David Novros, and John Chamberlain, inscribed on a little chip of silicon and surreptitiously transported to the moon's surface on the Apollo 12 mission. But of course there's a mystery, in this big of a secret: who is John F., the engineer at least partially responsible for smuggling the chip onboard the lunar lander? Related: other stuff people have left on the Moon (!)
posted by fiercecupcake on Nov 22, 2010 - 19 comments

Make mine Laudanum!

Steampunk is OK, but I prefer Victorian Lowbrow.
posted by JoanArkham on Aug 18, 2009 - 17 comments

The Moche

The images on the ceramics were thought to be mythical narratives, imagery the priestly class used to underscore its coercive power. Without proper archaeological evidence, the representations were too horrific to take literally. They depicted gruesome scenes of torture: captives skinned alive, drained of blood (which was drunk by priests in front of them), throats slit, bodies decapitated and left to the vultures, bones meticulously defleshed and hung from ropes.

Unfortunately for the victims, these bloody rites actually happened. They took place in an otherwise vibrant and highly advanced culture, a culture renowned for its artists and builders. These were a people who developed advanced agricultural knowledge, extremely sophisticated metallurgy, and built the largest pre-Columbian adobe structure in the Americas. Because they had no written language, though, it is by their ceramics that we know them best.

The Moche.
posted by crumbly on Jan 25, 2006 - 27 comments

Looting Asia's antiquities

The trade in stolen Asian relics is booming. TIME reports on how cultural sites are being looted and precious artifacts smuggled overseas. Sometimes they're returned, but much of Asia's cultural heritage is being lost.
posted by homunculus on Oct 26, 2003 - 9 comments

fetishes

Thogchags, Tsha tshas, Netsuke, or ???... What's your favorite fetish?
posted by pekar wood on Dec 12, 2002 - 14 comments

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