ARTEFACTS. 2.

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ARTEFACTS. 2.

 

Behind the actual weavers in every rug weaving country from Morocco in the west to China in the east there is an army of skilled artisans who make the items they need.  Other equally skilled workers make or process the materials such as looms, dyes, wool, silk, cotton and goat hair.  In the major cities designers work on graph paper to out-create each other to draw magnificent intricate designs.

Other artisanal workshops make or repair furniture, ceramics, leather work and utensils and tools for houses, huts and tents. 

I have been fortunate enough to travel many times in Morocco and Central Asia seeking out rugs.   I also learned from restorers but I could never resist spending time looking for unusual artefacts.

Use one as a unique item in your decor.

1797 GREAT BRITAIN "CARTWHEEL" TWO PENNY COIN. These are the most unusual coins ever made in Britain. To conquer mass counterfeiting of the coinage the government used the Soho Mint in Birmingham to undertake legal production. They were known as "Cartwheel" pennies because of their resemblence to a wheel with a raised rim around the edge. They were twice the thickness, and eight times the weight, of the penny coins used before them. Merchants and customers disliked the weight and size thus manufacture was discontinued at the end of 1799, although the date on the coins for the whole period remained as 1797. The face is of King George the 3rd. The reverse shows Britannia and below her shield the word "Soho" appears. Euros 75.

KING GEORGE 111 - Monarch of the period.

CHARITY TOKEN FROM MID VICTORIAN LONDON, DATED 1852. Most people associate the run down area of Whitechapel in London`s poor East End of the late 1800s with the notorious murderer known as "Jack the Ripper", however there was good work going on as well. Benevolent businessman, Thomas Dickinson, bequeathed to the Rector of the local church of St. Mary a substantial sum to be used for the making of charity tokens which poor people could exchange for bread, coal and potatoes. The seller could then redeem the tokens for cash from the Rector`s fund. Care was taken to give the tokens to the woman of the family so that errant husbands could not squander them on beer and other vices. It is not known who actually made the tokens nor how many of each were made and there seems to be little information on the net. Curiously I worked in London for 7 years and lived in a hostal where, according to local history, one of Jack the Ripper`s murders was carried out. I can vouch that little architectural progress had been made from the Victorian times. Electric street lights had replaced the gas ones, but that was all. Euros 95.

THE CHURCH OF ST. MARY IN WHITECHAPEL was just outside the city of London boundary. It was destroyed by fire in the second world war and replaced by a memorial garden.

YEMENI SILVER AND METAL NECKLACE dating from the first half of the 20th century and made probably by Bedouin artisans. It is heavy and contains many different smaller items such as bells. It has a central tablet upon which inscriptions have been inscribed. It was probably used mainly on ceremonial occasions. Reference 3530. Length 50cms. Euros 95.

CLOSE UP OF THE TABLET from which dozens of bells, each hand made and different, are attached.

AFGHAN ANIMAL TRAPPING. This extraordinary neck band is from the region of Dowlatabad. There are four raised, round flower heads in the pile and from each one there are 2 small and 1 larger hand beaten brass bells. The beadwork is exceptional. In "The Carpets of Afghanistan" the author, R.D. Parsons, confirms that this type of bell is used for rams. The size of the piece indicates that it would have been a collar for a large male sheep. In "Horse and Camel Trappings from Tribal Iran" plate 69 shows a muzzle band from the Belouch of Khorassan, part of which has a very similar weave. Reference 2457. Size 61 x 8cms. 2ft. x 3in. Euros 160.

AFGHAN ANIMAL TRAPPING. This extraordinary neck band is from the region of Dowlatabad. There are four raised, round flower heads in the pile and from each one there are 2 small and 1 larger hand beaten brass bells. The beadwork is exceptional. In "The Carpets of Afghanistan" the author, R.D. Parsons, confirms that this type of bell is used for rams. CLOSE UP.

MOROCCAN BERBER SHEPHERD'S LEATHER POUCHES complete with hanging loops for attaching to a belt. Various small bagaand pouches are made from soft off cuts of skins and put to use. The Berbers waste nothing. These pouches have a narrow neck with a slanted opening which facilitates pouring and are made to contain fine powder, spices and sometimes tobacco. They are decorated with typical and traditional Berber designs. References 3180 and 3181, Size 15 x 7 cms., or 6 x 3 inches. Euros 35 each.

TRADITIONAL BERBER DESIGNS ARE ENGRAVED INTO THE LEATHER. Decorative tassels swing from the bottom part.

PERSIAN KURDISH ARTIFACT. This finely worked piece is a collar for a small animal and would be used on ceremonial occasions. The fine decorative tassels, adorned with cowrie shells, are intact and the piece is Kurdish work from western Persia. The dyes are natural. Reference 2319. Size 63 x 14cms. 2ft.1in. x 5in. Euros 75.

PERSIAN KURDISH ARTIFACT. This finely worked piece is a collar for a small animal and would be used on ceremonial occasions. The fine decorative tassels, adorned with cowrie shells, are intact and the piece is Kurdish work from western Persia. The dyes are natural. Reference 2319. Size 63 x 14cms. 2ft.1in. x 5in. Euros 75.