Sunday, 9 October 2016

Artefacts and their Collecting Histories

"Afghan Genizah collection"
(National Library of Israel)
As a footnote to the recent discussion of the handling by archaeologists and numismatists of artefacts without verified origins an article on the so-called Afghan Geniza (sic) has a couple of quotes the significance of which for their work will most likely have escaped our British colleagues:
“I follow the principle of my teacher, Professor Givon, who said that whenever one acquires antiquities, one should beware of buying at the same time the tales which the dealers attach to their merchandise.

“None of the experts who have spoken publicly on the matter of the Afghan documents appeared to be too troubled by unanswered questions about their origins, seeming to accept such things as the cost of doing business in ancient artifacts.

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