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Re: rare mortar and pestle please help <3

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  • Jeff Spurr
    Thanks!. Yes, the British Museum has three related pieces with digital images, the example closest to mine having been acquired in Jordan. Some of these are
    Message 1 of 6 , Apr 24, 2013
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      Re: rare mortar and pestle please help <3
      Thanks!.  Yes, the British Museum has three related pieces with digital images, the example closest to mine having been acquired in Jordan.  Some of these are so sophisticated that one wonders whether urban artisans made them for the Beduin, a far from unprecedented relationship.

      A very crude example (at least in terms of decoration), properly identified as "Bedouin" was offered on ebay:

      >http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Bedouin-Pestle-Mortar-Coffee-Grinder-Instr ument-/251244624827?category=37942&cmd=ViewItem&ih=015&n ma=true&si=FQdyM6zoB7416ptm4u%252B%252FvdddlqY%253D&orig_cvip=true&rt=nc&_trksid=p2047675.l2557

      as is another, presently offered as "African," whose formal characteristics are essentially identical to mine although the decoration is not as finely realized:

      >http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/AFRICAN-TRIBAL-PESTLE-AND-MORTAR-CARVED-DE CORATION-/400354946258?_trksid=p2047675.m1850&_trkparms=aid%3D22 2002%26algo%3DSIC.FIT%26ao%3D1%26asc%3D15010%26meid%3D71918731216347 40748%26pid%3D100011%26prg%3D1121%26rk%3D2%26sd%3D251244624827%26



      At 5:00 PM +0100 4/24/13, Alex Robinson wrote:
      Here's an example from the British Museum:
      http://www.britishmuseum.org/research/search_the_collection_database /search_object_details.aspx?objectid=3320143&partid=1&output =Terms%2F!!%2FOR%2F!!%2F6870%2F!%2F%2F!%2FMade+by+Bedouin%2F!%2F%2F! !%2F%2F!!!%2F&orig=%2Fresearch%2Fsearch_the_collection_database%2Fadvanced_search.aspx&currentPage=1&numpages=200
      A web search for Bedouin coffee mortar will show other examples.
      Could be Zanzibar also, as Zanzibar was part of the Sultanate of Oman for a couple of hundred years and much of the architecture is similar.
      br Alex

      On 24 April 2013 16:24, Jeff Spurr <jbspurr@...> wrote:
      Thanks to Alex for this information,

      I own a very old one (deeply patinated with signs of long use).  Its decoration is totally abstract, and very finely incised.  Also features the furniture tacks.  I had guessed that it might be from Zanzibar, but Oman and the rest of the Arabian Peninsula is close enough.  I am curious to know whether the examples with figural decoration might be from further north (in any event what the design distribution might be for such items).  The only other example I have seen featured floral imagery and was represented as "Ottoman."  I suppose that, if it dating to pre-WWI and was from the right region, it would not have been totally off base, though not terribly useful either.




      It is a Bedouin (nomadic Arab) coffee mortar - I have seen these used in desert regions from Jordan down to UAE and Oman. Coffee is roasted over an open fire in what looks like a small shovel, pounded in these mortars and then brewed. New ones are also made for sale souvenirs.

      Hope this helps


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