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Re: [Authentic_SCA] sort of OT: history of horn?

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  • Heather Rose Jones
    ... I know that there are worked horn objects (e.g., combs) in some of the Danish Bronze Age burials (so ca. 13th c. BCE). I don t recall off the top of my
    Message 1 of 15 , Jul 24, 2008
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      On Jul 23, 2008, at 11:23 PM, Kareina Talvi Tytär wrote:

      > Hi,
      >
      > This question strains the boundaries of SCA period, and isn't
      > something I'm seriously interested in researching, it is just an idle
      > thought I'd toss out someplace where someone might happen to know the
      > answer off of the top of their heads, and if not, no worries.
      >
      > When did the use of worked horn become commonplace? I've often heard
      > it said that horn was the plastic of the Middle Ages, that it was
      > shaped used for pretty much anything that would be made out of
      > plastic today. How early was this true? Did the Greeks and Romans
      > use it? Earlier cultures? Do we find it in stone-age
      > burials?

      I know that there are worked horn objects (e.g., combs) in some of
      the Danish Bronze Age burials (so ca. 13th c. BCE). I don't recall
      off the top of my head whether there were any shaped horn objects
      among Ötzi's paraphernalia. (I could check when I get home tonight,
      but honestly I'm swamped working on my lecture presentation material,
      so even though I have the article sitting out at the moment, I'll
      probably forget.) Off the top of my head, I don't know how well it
      would survive in the usual Stone Age burial conditions.

      Tangwystyl
    • Chris Laning
      ... Well, except for the instances when leather or cuir bouilli was the plastic of the Middle Ages. Or wood, or clay..... bqut you knew that ;) ... My
      Message 2 of 15 , Jul 24, 2008
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        On Jul 23, 2008, at 11:23 PM, Kareina Talvi Tytär wrote:

        > When did the use of worked horn become commonplace? I've often heard
        > it said that horn was the plastic of the Middle Ages, that it was
        > shaped used for pretty much anything that would be made out of
        > plastic today.

        Well, except for the instances when leather or cuir bouilli was the
        "plastic of the Middle Ages." Or wood, or clay..... bqut you knew
        that ;)

        > How early was this true? Did the Greeks and Romans
        > use it? Earlier cultures? Do we find it in stone-age
        > burials? (This question was prompted when discussing the Clan of
        > the Cave Bear series with a friend and discussing how well researched
        > and to what level of detail on early technology the author goes, but
        > neither of us could recall examples from those books of the use of
        > horn worked into other shapes than that the animal grew for daily
        > tools/accessories.

        My rather vague impression is that forming horn into other shapes
        (other than by simple carving) requires some rather extensive
        treatment in boiling water. So you'd at least have to have boiling-
        water technology, however early *that* was.

        ____________________________________________________________

        O (Dame) Christian de Holacombe, OL - Shire of Windy Meads
        + Kingdom of the West - Chris Laning <claning@...>
        http://paternoster-row.org - http://paternosters.blogspot.com
        ____________________________________________________________
      • Brad Moore
        Native Americans (and yes I know it isn t necessarily solid documentation) were using shaped horn, pre-white contact to make spoons, bowls, etc. Boiling water
        Message 3 of 15 , Jul 24, 2008
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          Native Americans (and yes I know it isn't necessarily solid documentation) were using shaped horn, pre-white contact to make spoons, bowls, etc. Boiling water technology was being done in stomach bags with heated stones during the stone age (this was a common technology in most all primitive peoples), we know this from piles of stone fragments found at stone age sites (stone is "aged" rapidly by repeated heating in a fire for boiling, or other purposes and breaks down). It would stand to reason that this would have been an appropriate early period technology, but I have absolutely no documentation for it in Europe during the medieval period.

          I searched "Horn Implments" and found this site immediately: http://www.bmarch.atfreeweb.com/where_the_horn.htm. It's concerning horn use in the Sutton Hoo site.

          Brad Moore
          "I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain." Frank Herbert, Dune, Litany Against Fear, 1965
        • Kareina Talvi Tytär
          ... Thank you! That s more than enough detail for level of curiosity I was expressing, don t worry about distracting yourself form the lecture prep (unless
          Message 4 of 15 , Jul 25, 2008
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            Tangwystyl wrote:

            >I know that there are worked horn objects (e.g., combs) in some of
            >the Danish Bronze Age burials (so ca. 13th c. BCE). I don't recall
            >off the top of my head whether there were any shaped horn objects
            >among Ötzi's paraphernalia. (I could check when I get home tonight,
            >but honestly I'm swamped working on my lecture presentation material,
            >so even though I have the article sitting out at the moment, I'll
            >probably forget.) Off the top of my head, I don't know how well it
            >would survive in the usual Stone Age burial conditions.

            Thank you! That's more than enough detail for
            level of curiosity I was expressing, don't worry
            about distracting yourself form the lecture prep
            (unless you want to, of course).

            And thanks to everyone else who replied, much appreciated!

            --Kareina, enjoying the fact that there is so
            much collective "off the top of your head" knowledge available here

            http://kareina.livejournal.com/
          • borderlands15213
            ... Curious, that you d think When did the use of worked horn become commonplace? would strain the bounds of SCA period. I am thinking I can recall seeing,
            Message 5 of 15 , Jul 25, 2008
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              --- In Authentic_SCA@yahoogroups.com, Kareina Talvi Tytär
              <kareina@...> wrote:
              >
              > Hi,
              >
              > This question strains the boundaries of SCA period, and isn't
              > something I'm seriously interested in researching, it is just an idle
              > thought I'd toss out someplace where someone might happen to know the
              > answer off of the top of their heads, and if not, no worries.
              >
              > When did the use of worked horn become commonplace? I've often heard
              > it said that horn was the plastic of the Middle Ages, that it was
              > shaped used for pretty much anything that would be made out of
              > plastic today. How early was this true? Did the Greeks and Romans
              > use it? Earlier cultures? Do we find it in stone-age
              > burials? (This question was prompted when discussing the Clan of
              > the Cave Bear series with a friend and discussing how well researched
              > and to what level of detail on early technology the author goes, but
              > neither of us could recall examples from those books of the use of
              > horn worked into other shapes than that the animal grew for daily
              > tools/accessories. We were wondering if its absence is deliberate on
              > the part of the author because it wasn't used that far back, so far
              > as is known from the archeological record, or if it is known from
              > that far back, but hasn't made the books yet, or perhaps, we just
              > didn't remember that part in amongst all the rest of it. Does
              > horn-work require domesticated beasts, or are horns from wild animals
              > easy enough to obtain to learn how to shape it?)
              >
              > --Kareina, idly curious
              >
              > http://kareina.livejournal.com/
              >

              Curious, that you'd think "When did the use of worked horn become
              commonplace?" would strain the bounds of SCA period.
              I am thinking I can recall seeing, in a book of antiques (or, in this
              case, antiquities) a lidded horn box, and a horn comb, and a horn
              something-else, all pre C.E. Egyptian---I just can't recall at the
              moment how far pre-C.E. They were impressively beautifully done.

              That's a farthing's worth---

              Yseult the Gentle
            • Kareina Talvi Tytär
              ... The part that I thought might be straining the bounds of SCA period was asking if anyone knew if it was done in the Stone Age. While there is no official
              Message 6 of 15 , Jul 25, 2008
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                Yseult the Gentle wrote:

                >Curious, that you'd think "When did the use of worked horn become
                >commonplace?" would strain the bounds of SCA period.

                The part that I thought might be straining the bounds of SCA period
                was asking if anyone knew if it was done in the Stone Age. While
                there is no official "start date" in the SCA governing documents, it
                does mention the Middle Ages and Renaissance as the specific focus of
                our organization. Some folk choose personas that are classical
                Roman, but I've yet to meet someone with a Neolithic persona in the SCA.

                --Kareina


                http://kareina.livejournal.com/
              • borderlands15213
                ... Understood and agreed. I got that you were asking about worked horn in the Neolithic period; also got, because I agree that if we say our purpose is
                Message 7 of 15 , Jul 26, 2008
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                  --- In Authentic_SCA@yahoogroups.com, Kareina Talvi Tytär
                  <kareina@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > Yseult the Gentle wrote:
                  >
                  > >Curious, that you'd think "When did the use of worked horn become
                  > >commonplace?" would strain the bounds of SCA period.
                  >
                  > The part that I thought might be straining the bounds of SCA period
                  > was asking if anyone knew if it was done in the Stone Age. While
                  > there is no official "start date" in the SCA governing documents, it
                  > does mention the Middle Ages and Renaissance as the specific focus of
                  > our organization. Some folk choose personas that are classical
                  > Roman, but I've yet to meet someone with a Neolithic persona in the SCA.
                  >
                  > --Kareina
                  >
                  >
                  > http://kareina.livejournal.com/
                  >
                  Understood and agreed.
                  I "got" that you were asking about worked horn in the Neolithic
                  period; also "got," because I agree that if we say our purpose is the
                  study and recreation of, and our focus is on, the Middle Ages and
                  Renaissance then, that even without an "official" start date we have
                  rather specified what boundaries are.
                  But since worked horn is correct for SCA pseudo-official period, i.e.,
                  the Middle Ages and Renaissance, it's reasonable to ask: how old is
                  this craft?

                  Yseult the Gentle
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