Monday, March 21, 2011

First Public Showing for Mysterious Sculpture

 A mysterious sculpture ~ thought by some experts to predate the pyramids of Egypt ~ is being displayed publicly for the first time in hopes of attracting international attention and fresh insights into its origins.

No expert among the many consulted over the past decade can identify the sculpture's age or artistic tradition, nor can they decipher the "ancient, yet unidentifiable language" etched into the artwork.

The large limestone object depicting two entwined and perhaps emaciated figures, "could be one of the rarest finds of its kind," according to Clarence Epstein of Montreal’s Concordia University.

The two nude subjects ~ one a male and the other possibly a female holding a child ~ are depicted in a sitting position with abnormally large heads and elongated limbs. It was brought to Canada in the 1940s by Vincent and Olga Diniacopoulos, Greek immigrants from France who had amassed a world-class collection of antiquities gathered from Egypt, Israel and other ancient sites. The family's vast collection was donated about 10 years ago to Concordia.

The Diniacopouloses considered the mysterious sculpture the centerpiece of their collection. And while there is little documentation about the artwork's provenance, the couple had listed the object under the title "The Starving of Saqqara," referring to one of Egypt's largest burial grounds.

Click here for the complete article.
Click here for another article, with more photos and a video.


Glen Gordon said...

Assuming it's not fake, has anyone considered Meroitic, an ancient Sudanese language?

Gregory LeFever said...

Interesting question, Glen. By the way, I just added another link at the bottom of the post. It goes to Past Horizons' page and has more photos of the sculpture, including one that vaguely shows some of the unknown writing. You might find it of interest.

Thanks again, Glen, for leaving your comment.

Glen Gordon said...

Yes, I've already seen the photo of the writing on it which is why I suggested Meroitic.

The Wikipedia entry on this artifact only states that the "script has been determined to not be Aramaic, Demotic, Egyptian, Hebrew, or Syriac." No mention of Meroitic yet.

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