Monthly Archives: October 2012

Poems by Nizami from 1584 CE [Object of the Day #90]

Poems by Nizami

Born in Modern-day Azerbaijan in the mid-12th Century, Nizami is often considered the most important medieval Persian poet and his works remained highly popular as modes of artistic expression long after his death. His master work, “The Quinary” or “Khamsa” – which entered the public realm about the same time that The Song of Roland […]

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Bronze Plaque from Benin, Nigeria [Object of the Day #89]

Benin Plaque

One of the first projects I remember working on at the museum was briefly helping with was “Iyare!” –  a fascinating exhibit of African material from Benin – and one of the most-eye catching pieces in the exhibit was this intricate plaque. The bronze plaques from the 16th Century Nigerian kingdom have long amazed people […]

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Sandstone Statue [Object of the Day #88]

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While this sandstone statue of Sitepihu dates to the Eighteenth Dynasty (around 1470 BCE), the block figure itself was a type that was introduced at the beginning of the Twelfth Dynasty (around 1900 BCE), several hundred years earlier.  It represents a squatting male figure with a long cloak enveloping his entire body.  His arms are […]

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Mediterranean Quiver [Object of the Day #87]

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  Today’s object is only a fragment of a quiver that has been broken at the top. It is coated in a very dark green patina with a lighter, rough interior. The upper right hand corner of the inside has an area of red corrosion. This hints that a metal object may have come in […]

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Penn Museum, Arden Theatre Company, and Freud’s obsession with antiquities

Freud's Last Session

The Arden Theatre Company, in Old City Philadelphia, is setting the stage for a unique new production… with some help from the Penn Museum. The Arden’s upcoming show, Freud’s Last Session, is set in the London office of Dr. Sigmund Freud—a famed psychologist with a penchant for collecting antiquities. In order to accurately recreate Freud’s […]

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Beaded Basket [Object of the Day #86]

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  This incredibly decorated basket is from Djibouti, Africa. The object is intricately beaded with a combination of red, black, and white glass beads. The structure of the basket is made of raphia, a type of palm tree, and is adorned with several tassels ending in shells. Penn Museum Object #2003-53-2 See this and other […]

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Sash [Object of the Day #85]

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  This sash is created from very fine banana fiber. It’s dyed in natural colors, red, and blue. The sash is decorated with alternating bands of intricate geometric designs and plain red strips. This style is characteristic of the island of Pohnpei. It would have been woven by women and worn as a part of […]

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Dagger Blade [Object of the Day #84]

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  This Dagger blade was made in England During the Bronze Age. It is made from bronze with a yellow patina. The blade is double-edged with curved sides that taper out from the rounded guard to a point. There are two large studs at the end where the blade would attach to a handle. Penn […]

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Pile Cloth, Textile [Object of the Day-#83]

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This embroidered pile cloth is made by the Bushongo in Zaire, Africa. The design includes squares of angular lines which, create different patterns. Similar patterns are arranged diagonally from each other and are bordered by a brown cloth, on three sides.  Embroidery is a technique used to decorate fabric and often involves using needle and […]

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Jeweled Box [Object of the Day #82]

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  Silver, Gold, Lapis Lazuli, Turquoise, Coral, Ruby, Emerald, and Aquamarine jewels all decorate the top of this silver box. There is a central figure made out of coral on a gold plaque with a turquoise border. To each side of the coral figure are two lapis lazuli monkeys. Around the sides are 12 human figures, four of which are gilded on […]

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