Friday, September 5, 2014

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

William Augustus Bowles

"Bowles was born in Maryland in 1763. He joined the British forces in America at an early age, but was dismissed from his post. He took refuge with the Creek Indians, learned their language, married a chief’s daughter, and lived the life of an adventurer. The unorthodox and romantic dress he wears in the portrait is illustrative of this unconventional life.
In 1781 he was reinstated by the British forces, and commanded the Creeks in General Arthur Campbell’s defence of Pensacola. Later, in 1790, he came to England, where he was to promote a mad-cap scheme for the invasion of Mexico. He was twice captured by the Spanish: the first time he escaped to Sierra Leone, but the second time, in 1799, was fatal. He was imprisoned in the Moro Castle at Havana and died there in 1805." *

Monday, March 4, 2013

Boar's tusk mouth ornament

Boar's tusk mouth ornament, Collingwood Bay, Papua New Guinea 10" high by 11" wide When the mouth piece is held between the teeth, the upper tusks curve over the eyebrows, producing a very fierce impression. Early to mid-20th century

Thursday, January 17, 2013


It is this phase of the Mesolithic period (Middle Stone Age), presumably the first half of the 7th millennium BC, during which an extraordinary burial, interpreted as that of a female shaman, war placed in the earth. The deceased young woman was interred in a 30-cm thick layer of red hematite, a mineral colourant, together with an at most twelve month-old child. Gifts for the deceased had been placed in the grave, among which were several flint blades, two bone needles, a antler hoe, a polished stone celt and several decorative plaques from boar tusk. In addition, there were two bones of a crane, one bone of a beaver and of red deer, 16 red deer incisors, two matching skull fragments with antlers of a roe deer, shell fragments of at least three swamp turtles and 120 fragments of freshwater mussels. A container made from a crane’s bone held 31 tiny flint blades (Fig. 6). The reconstruction of the shaman’s dress as shown here is based upon the position of the finds in the grave. * (pdf link)