Archaeology and Forgery

What surprised me is that broken Roman pottery isn't rare , there's places down on the Thames estuary littered with it.
Fortnum and masons used to have upstairs, a selection of roman glassware that was surprisingly affordable for stuff that was so ancient.
It turns out that it was customary to bury the dead with glassware and shedloads has been dug up.
 

Awol

LE
What surprised me is that broken Roman pottery isn't rare , there's places down on the Thames estuary littered with it.
Well, when you think about it, every single piece of hundreds of thousands of Roman dwellings are still here somewhere, albeit broken, buried and scattered.
 
Well, when you think about it, every single piece of hundreds of thousands of Roman dwellings are still here somewhere, albeit broken, buried and scattered.
The Romans transported olive oil in amphorae, they weren't glazed and the oil would soak into the crockery and turn rancid. They were disposable, single use containers. They'd smash them and dump the shards.
There is a hill in Rome 35 metres high that contains about 50 million odd broken amphorae.

 
The Romans transported olive oil in amphorae, they weren't glazed and the oil would soak into the crockery and turn rancid. They were disposable, single use containers. They'd smash them and dump the shards.
There is a hill in Rome 35 metres high that contains about 50 million odd broken amphorae.

There are museum stores piled high with shreds of Roman brick, tile and pottery. Storage space for find is at crisis point, so maybe a money making opportunity for someone to sell off the surplus ‘real’ stuff.
 
If you know where to look , walk you can pick up Roman and older stuff in fields all over Italy, knew an American who was well into it. He would ask the local farmer, normally give him a stick of smokes and he found ll sorts. Best was the head of a statue.
 
Egypt too, If you ever get to Saqqara. have a shufti round the back of Teti's Pyramid , there's a small hill made entirely of broken pottery excavated from a recently discovered shaft tomb. A lot of the small offering dishes are virtually intact. of course I didn't pocket any , absolutely not. :) .
 
Egypt too, If you ever get to Saqqara. have a shufti round the back of Teti's Pyramid , there's a small hill made entirely of broken pottery excavated from a recently discovered shaft tomb. A lot of the small offering dishes are virtually intact. of course I didn't pocket any , absolutely not. :) .
So you're the reason that 2020 has been a bit special so far. Trust you to pick up the cursed one!
 
Of course there's a moral question there. Is it morally fine to rip off NAZI fantasising bellends?
I'd have no problem at all with that. Besides it wasn't the uniforms, it was the people in them. Uniforms do nothing at all. Of course I presume no one is making the ersatz uniforms made from nettles. :cool:
 

Chef

LE
All of these things pose a problem for museums. Things once considered to be "genuine" because they had been in a museum collection for a long time are now being recognised as fakes. This presents a problem for museums, when important parts of their collection are suddenly a lot less valuable than they were once thought to be.
Edited for brevity.

I believe that a lot of museums and art galleries are a little reticent about checking their paintings too closely for that reason. When the Dutch WWII forgeries came to light there was a lot of panic in the art world as 'School of Rembrandt/Vermeer' is a lot cheaper than original painting by the master.

As for old is 'probably' genuine I believe that a lot of early English manuscripts like Beowulf attributed to the 7th century have yet to be carbon dated.

Many have come from stately homes and can deffo be traced back to Tudor times and coincide with the dissolution of the monasteries when lots of clerks and copyists were at a loose end, while the nouveau riche were building the aforementioned stately homes and looking around for classy stuff for the library.

On a different note all those lovely Greek marble statues were originally painted up and would have looked more like Madame Tussauds wax works than the white figures we're used to seeing.
 

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