British Museum Artifacts
We were instructed to look up ten different artifacts from the British Museum, and search for them while we were there and learn about them. Once we had found our ten we were then instructed to choose the eight most important and write about them. The British Museum is large and the architecture is very modern considering how old this museum is. This museum is very large and there are many different artifacts crammed into the various rooms that are organized by the different time periods throughout History. I spent a lot of my time in the Roman room. The Romans are some of my favorite people to learn about in all of history.
The Rosetta Stone is the only surviving fragment left of the larger stone slab. It is inscribed with different languages that helped decipher the Egyptian hieroglyphic script. The top decree was written in hieroglyphs which is already over 3,000 years old. The second is the same decree written in Demotic which is the everyday script of the literate Egyptians. And the bottom is written in Greek, the language used by the government. The entire stone is known as Stela, but with the slab partly missing we know this as the Rosetta Stone. Durning this time Egypt was ruled by a Greek Dynasty and the decree was written in honor of the king Ptolmey Epiphanes. Stela was placed in a temple that they think was near the city of Sais near Rashid.
Lely's Venus (Aphrodite)
This is a Greek sculpture of Aphrodite and it would appear that she is surprised while she is bathing and her water jar is resting under her left thigh. Her arms are crossed like she is trying to cover herself and her hair is done in an up twist bun type style and her head is turned away from the possible intruder. The description of this sculpture states that, the naked Aphrodite is a popular image among the Greek sculptors and this sculpture was probably done in the first or second century AD and is a Roman copy of the early original. The original statue was designed to be interactive between the viewer and the artwork. If you walk around this piece you will see the different viewpoints and the subtleness of each of them and their take on the naked Aphrodite being invaded while she was bathing. The four viewpoints presents a strikingly different aspect to the naked goddess.
This is a bronze shield that is used for parade armor, it would have been useless to use in combat. The shield on display at the British Museum was beaten from a single plate of bronze. The handle on the back is attached using rivets. Parade shields were sometimes deposited in wet places the description of this particular shield says that is was found in a bog. It also states that combat shields would have been made out of leather or wood.
Mechanical Celestial Globe
The description states that the gilt-brass stand at the base of the globe is held by claw feet with lion-heads. This celestial globe was created for Landgrave Wilhelm IV of Hesse-Kassel, by four craftsmen. It's engraved with all the stars known at the time. They are proportionally sized and originally enamelled in color. As well as knowing the stars positions it also includes their rising and setting times. It completes one full rotation everyday just like the world. I picked this particular artifact because it's beautiful to the eye and I loved the elegance it holds. I really spent a lot of time looking at this and studying it's detail in as much depth as I could from a distance.
Hercules is a Greek God, the son of Zeus. There wasn't much to say about Hercules, however I love Hercules. He is my favorite Greek God and when I was a kid I used to watch the cartoon all the time it was one of my favorites. You can see the age of this statue by the very fact that parts of it are missing due to time weakening the limestone. This particular portrayal of Hercules is of him resting on a rock. It's Roman and it dates back to 2nd or early 3rd century AD. Found in the palace of Sennacherib in Nineveh. The base is inscribed with 'Diogenes made (this). Sarapidorus son of Artemidorus (dedicated this) in fulfillment of vow.'