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Memento Mori


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Nicely carved piece Robin. I would think it originally formed part of a commemorative box. Do you have any

ideas on origin ?

These pieces have always been popular collectibles - the problem was Queen Victoria - who had everyone carrying bits

of their loved ones around in lockets etc..

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Nicely carved piece Robin. I would think it originally formed part of a commemorative box. Do you have any

ideas on origin ?

Hello Mervyn.

It came from Germany with several other old carved religious items ............... cherubs, Madonnas, etc.

Just appealed to me as I like visiting old 'skull and bones' gravestones in my neck of the woods (strange, but true).

My local church was once famous as having the most active 'Witchfinder' in 17th Century Scotland. :)

The churchyard is full of skull and bones tombstones.

As they say, this joker always has the last laugh!

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  • 3 months later...
  • 1 year later...

How's about this for a Memento Mori?

An albumen print (c. 1885) by G.Incapora, with the dressed up remains of Roman Catholic prelates on exhibition (about 25 x 19 cm)

As I'm not mistaking , these are still in one of the catacombs of Palermo/ Italy

best regards

Kornel

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I like them a lot!

Here is one I have, never knew what it was for....

I got it with some ground dugs WWII (German items)I bought once.

I only saw one very simillar of a guy on a forum, who got it the same way as I did.....

It could be a walking stick end , it fits in a hand palm.

cheers

|<ris

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Robin

I used to work at Deptford, South London and always stopped to look at these skulls that are on the gate to St Nicholas church. A church has been at this location for 800 years and Christopher Marlowe (contemporary of Shakespeare) is said to be buried in the grave yard. Deptford is situated on the banks of the Thames, near Greenwich, and because of it's long maritime history it is said that these skull & cross bones were the inspiration for the pirate flag.

Alex

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Stuka - I think you are right - the top for a walking stick. The holes seem to be at the right angle to have it

facing straight out - there wouldw have been a top piece for the palm.

Alex - fantastic - I've never seen these although I used to live in Blackheath until 1949. The Piracy angle could

well be - after all we used to hang them further along the river front...........

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Well worth looking at this - a very highly skilled sculptor in gold and silver. I though his Griffon was very good - but the Nef or, sailing

ship is exceptional. During the middle ages they had salt bowls in the middle of the ship and it was pushed down the table for people to

help themselves. Whilst the workmanship is exquisite, I'm still not sure about his obsession with skulls - I suppose there is a market

for pendents and bracelets. I think Robin will be a customer ? Thanks for showing this link. Mervyn

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I have always found these bone and scull arrangements quite bizarre. I have seen them in many parts of the World -

even in a Church in Dublin. I wonder did they bury the bodies first to get rid of the flesh ? The smell must have been

dreadful. Mervyn

As I recall when visiting the Sedlec Ossuary in Kutna Hora (Czech Republic), the bodies were exhumed and then treated to get rid of whatever flesh that may still have been left and give the skeleton a whiter colour. Personally, I wouldn't call it bizarre, but it was definitely a visit to remember.

/Jonas

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Well worth looking at this - a very highly skilled sculptor in gold and silver. I though his Griffon was very good - but the Nef or, sailing

ship is exceptional. During the middle ages they had salt bowls in the middle of the ship and it was pushed down the table for people to

help themselves. Whilst the workmanship is exquisite, I'm still not sure about his obsession with skulls - I suppose there is a market

for pendents and bracelets. I think Robin will be a customer ? Thanks for showing this link. Mervyn

My pleasure Mervyn.

The guy is very skilled, but no sculpting involved here. He just buys existing old parts, he assembles.

And I provide them;

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Jonas is right . Visiting as a child with my parents similar place in Silesia in southern Poland - Czermna near Kudowa Zdroj - was said exactly the same.

you may take a look :

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Skull_Chapel_in_Czermna

Stuka , these art pieces of your friend are VERY , VERY impressive ! His sense of taste , workmanship and detail orientation are unbelievable ! I like them a lot .

Thanks for showing them !

best regards

Kornel

ps. Mervyn you know why skulls ... skull is , and always was kind of mystery , a symbol of a journey which more or less scares some of us , but regardless that fact stimulate our imagination - almost touching untouchable . *

friendly regards

Kornel

* don't worry , I'm not too exited about coffins , cemeteries etc. - I just like some of it's esthetic value and find them reflective .

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I have always found these bone and scull arrangements quite bizarre. I have seen them in many parts of the World -

even in a Church in Dublin. I wonder did they bury the bodies first to get rid of the flesh ? The smell must have been

dreadful. Mervyn

Mervyn you're absolutely right - it is bizarre , but aren't we as a human race not ?

I'm not really able for any polemic not only because of my poor , monkey-broken English (still after 9 years in US , never learned it anyway ) , but simply because it's rhetorical question , plus you're much more life experienced , world traveled and educated then me . :(

Collecting incl. any kind of oddities is as old as our material culture , what's well known fact . Instead of trying to describe it I use another book's description :

>>>Unicorns’ horns, mermaids’ skeletons, stuffed and preserved animals and plants, work in precious metals, clocks, scientific instruments, celestial globes . . . all knowledge, the whole cosmos arranged on shelves. Such were the cabinets of curiosities of the seventeenth century, the last period of history when man could aspire to know everything.

Who were the collectors? They were archdukes and kings—the Emperor Rudolf II was the prince of all collectors—rich merchants and scholars, and their collections ranged from a single crowded room to whole palatial suites. <<<

best friendly regards

Kornel

Edited by Kornel R.
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Kornel - I think your description of the fascination with bodies is 'spot-on'. From earliest history we have preserved skeletons - probably

in hopes of the Spirits return. I think most cultures follow this practise - on the Island of Madagascar they unwrap the ancestors bones every

seven years in case of a return.

I was interested when you said you have only been 9 years in the US. Where are you from originally ? I hope you picked a warm area to settle,

some of the US and Canada seems to be under snow a lot of the time.

Stuka - your friend makes these from small scrap metal - absolutely amazing ! When I had the shop we would often take the works out of broken

pocket watches to scrap - people were always coming in to buy the works and I was told they were usually broken down and montages made.

My mention of Robin - was Robin Lumsden, one of our senior members. He collects anything to do with military sculls and crossed bones. I think

he posted earlier on this thread. Mervyn

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