Tuesday, 7 July 2020

Piecing Together the History of "The Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir Collection" from Dealers' "Documentation": Summary (As Things Stand Today)


Howard Rose
The several dozen posts below this consider antiquities being sold in the US, Netherlands and the UK that are mostly provenanced to the collection of an Egyptian national Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir, who in 1948 moved to the US. In or around 2013, his grandson started selling this material. It is possible that the sales started earlier, but they are more difficult to trace online and I have not had time to do this yet. I do not believe the Spanish dealer's claim that the sales started in the early 60s (before the birth of the current seller). This is an undocumented claim and I think totally invented.

The first sale that I have located at the moment (possibly there are earlier sales in New York, perhaps Arte Primitivo?) is the sale in London at Bonham's of four fragments of relief from an unlocated monument of Smenty Wahibrenebahet in May 2013. What is interesting is the provenance: 
Ashraf Eldarir Collection, USA, acquired by the present owner's grandfather Mr. Souaya in Egypt in 1948, thence by descent. Ashraf Eldarir's grandfather was a friend of Prince of Egypt Omar Tosson, with whom he shared a passion for archaeology. The collection was formed during the 1930s-1940s, mostly gifts from Prince Tosson. The collection was moved to the United States in 1948 and remained in their possession until the present day.
Ashraf is Ashraf Omar (public records in the US that can be found online show that he seems to have used a number of names and lived in a number of places in central Brooklyn over the past 20 years), but the grandfather's name is given in a different form in the documentation of later sales. The 'brought to the US in 1948' theme is maintained throughout.It would be very interesting to know who put this material on sale.

In 2014 there was a sale of another sculpture, a Third Intermediate Period stele sold by Ancient Resource Auctions Glendale, California. I have not yet traced any New York sales from 2013-4. In 2015, however, there was the first (?) New York sale of Eldarir material, just across the river in Manhattan by Arte Primitivo Howard S. Rose Gallery (Auction 75, May 18th, 2015). Admittedly the seller's name is not given, nor the name of the collector, but the theme "Private NYC collection, brought to USA prior to 1948, to present owner by descent" as well as the range of material represented suggest very strongly what this is. It is interesting to speculate why the name is not given at this stage. :

In 2016 Charles Ede in London had a sculpted Old Kingdom piece which is sold with a variant of the Prince Tosson story (but this time with a new surname of the old collector) and with the name of the dealer " Mr Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir, Egypt; acquired 17th June 1941 from Salahaddin Sirmali". So far, I have only found these names in relation to these sales. It looks like Ede was shown a copy of a document of the same format as the one the map-seller received. Some time after 2015 (there is no date on the sale), Alexander Ancient Art (Alexander Biesbroek, Voorschoten The Netherlands) resold a relief fragment from the Ezeldeen Taha Eldaric collection that had come from the 2015 Arte Primitivo sale, but cites the Tosson story. He thinks it came from the same tomb as the Bonham's fragment.

In March 2017 Howard S. Rose in his New York Arte Primitivo Gallery (Catalogue 84) has only a few small items from the "exported to the USA in 1948" collection, amulets and jewellery and two shabtis, but also a wooden figure explicitly said to be from the Elzadeen Taha Eldarir collection. The latter turned up three years later in a sale by Christoph Bacher Archäologie Ancient Art Gallery in Vienna, apparently bought directly from the Arte Primitivo site, along with a number of amulets obtained perhaps by the splitting of lots.

Possibly I have missed some sales of this material from 2018 (?). Washington DC dealer Sue McGovern Huffman (convener of the Association of Dealers and Collectors of Ancient and Ethnographic Art) had a sawn-up bit of coffin on sale in 2018 and 2019. This had been sawn off a mummy case at chest level for transport. Again we see a return to the Tosson theme and teh grandfather's alternative name:
Ashraf Eldarir Collection, New York, USA, acquired by the present owner's grandfather Mr. Souaya in Egypt in 1948, thence by descent. Ashraf Eldarir's grandfather was a friend of Prince of Egypt Omar Tosson, with whom he shared a passion for archaeology. The collection was formed during the 1930s-1940s, mostly gifts from Prince Tosson [...].
The number of sales of material from this old collection picks up in 2019. Most of this was going through the Arte Primitivo Gallery on East 65th Street New York, with the September 16th 2019 sale (jewellery, an odd-looking plastered and painted mudbrick, amulets, wrenched-off 'mummy masks', lots of jelly-baby shabtis, mummy beads - some staged as found in a jar - some dodgy looking figurienes and a relief fragment). By now the provenance has developed to the form: "Sold to Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir from Salahaddin Sirmali on 5/15/1930. Authenticated and appraised by Mr. Hossen Rashed, head of the Egyptian Antiquities house", though this is not used consistently. But that sale of 15th May 1930 must have been a big one as it is mentioned a number of times subsequently. One of them was the 'jar of jelly-baby shabtis' sold separately by Arte Primitivo in December 2019.

On April 18th 2019 it is reported that Omar Eldarir was stopped with a single artefact (polychrome relief) from Egypt.in his hand luggage but apparently no paperwork for it.

Things start happening in earnest in 2020. On January 22nd 2020 Omar Eldarir arrived at JFK from Egypt with three 'dirty' suitcases, when Customs inspected them they were found to contain 590 bubble and foam-wrapped Egyptian antiquities. Eldarir did not produce any of the required documentation from Egypt authorizing the export of the artefacts.

A few months later, the Chicago coin dealer Harlan Berk sold a wooden shabti, allegedly from the old Eldarir collection in April 2020. It is a pretty naff piece and the patina is a bit odd. It's not clear how he obtained it. It was also one of the latest pieces acquired by the collector:
Ex collection of Mr Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir; acquired 1946 from Salahaddin Sirmali, Cairo. Authenticated and appraised by Mr. Hossen Rashed, head of the Egyptian Antiquities house.
Also in April 2020, Arte Primitivo has an 'Isis-Aphrodite' figurine and quotes a sales document:
"It is on August 6th, 1929. We the honorable Salahaddin Sirmali...bey sold to the honorable Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir ...bey A group of ancient Egyptian, Greek and Roman antiquities. Authenticated and appraised by the ancient Egyptian expert and the head of the Egyptian antiquities house: Mr. Hossen Rashed [...]".
The document itself is not shown, and neither is the buyer informed that they will receive a copy.It is interesting that the same combination of individuals is involved, even though the activities were 17 years apart.

In June this year Bob Dodge of Artemis Gallery Erie, Colorado USA has been selling several items of the Eldarir grandfather collection that had previously been bought (when? How?) by a Honolulu collector
Provenance: private Hawaii, USA collection; ex-private Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir collection, New York, USA, purchased in December, 1946 and imported from Egypt in November, 1948; ex-Salahaddin Sirmali collection, Egypt; appraised by Mr. Hossen Rashed, head of the Egyptian antiquities house
Papyri that the same Honolulu collector had with the same provenence were bought in 1929. I feel if we knew more about that Hawaiian collection, we might have more of an idea about the beginnings of the dispersal of Mr Eldarir's material.

Another New York dealer (Howard Knowes, "Art for eternity" ) has a May 15th 1930 piece. A wrenched-off mummy case face. Nasty. I strongly suspect that a Spanish seller has just copied the provenance of something he's seen online and falsely claimed it for one of his over-priced fakes.

One of the more informative sales of this material is not by an antiquities dealer at all. It seems map-sellers are not aware that antiquities dealers tend to 'lose' any documentation - can't let the punter see some, or they'll all want some. Anyay a map seller in  Jefferson City, Tennessee found himself teh possessor of an 'Ancient Egyptian Polychrome Wall Painting New Kingdom, 19th-20th Dynasty', bought as lot 485 of the Arte Primitivo sale September 18th, 2019 (where it had an estimate of $25,000-$35,000). Anyway the new owner does not really want it and is trying to flog it off. One might surmise why, and why they ar willing to shift it at a price lower than the (admittedly over-inflated) estimate. As a buttress for the claim that this piece is perfectly legitimate, they've actually attached  what is supposed to be a sales document of April 24th 1929. Really worth a look, you'll not see many of those on eBay!

Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir was a collector that knew what he likes, and he liked a lot of it, he did not want a few mummy beads, he wanted and acquired heaps of them, jelly-bean shabtis he collected by the bucketful, amulets by the boxfull. He was not interested in the whole mummy cases, just the faces ripped off them, or even the bronze framed inlaid eyes gouged from them.  No wonder his heirs wanted to get rid of such monotonously repetitive material. Fortunately for his heirs, these big job lots are just what dealers love to split up and sell off singly, more profit there. So granddad's hoarding habit provided a nice little windfall. But why, pray, if he had these masses of stuff holed up in one of his Brooklyn properties to get rid of to make some space, did Mr Eldarir decide to go to Egypt to bring more stuff over? To fill the empty cupboards as a memorial to the old man? Once he was stopped, it seems he was risking a lot by doing it a second time. Why? Hopefully the upcoming court case will resolve the mystery.

All individuals mentioned in this post are, as ever, innocent unless proven guilty.

"The Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir Collection": Nearly six hundred Egyptian 'Antiquities' Seized in New York (January - July 2020)


The Department of Justice press release names this antiquities smuggler ('Brooklyn Man Indicted on Cultural Artifacts Smuggling Charges' DOJ Press release Monday, July 6, 2020)
An indictment has been returned in federal court in Central Islip, New York charging Ashraf Omar Eldarir, a U.S. citizen, with smuggling Egyptian cultural property into the United States. Eldarir was previously arrested on a complaint in February 2020 after arriving at John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) with three suitcases filled with undeclared Egyptian antiquities. [...] on January 22, 2020, Eldarir arrived at JFK from Egypt with three checked suitcases. Eldarir falsely declared to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) that he was carrying goods valued at only 300 U.S. dollars. However, when CBP officers opened Eldarir’s suitcases they found 590 bubble and foam-wrapped Egyptian antiquities. When the protective wrapping was opened, loose sand and dirt spilled out, and some of the items smelled of wet earth, indicators that the artifacts had been recently excavated.  [...]  Eldarir did not produce any of the required documentation from Egypt authorizing the export of the artifacts. Eldarir was charged with one count of smuggling arising from this incident, and one count of smuggling involving an earlier trip in which he smuggled an ancient Egyptian polychrome relief. [...] “These cultural treasures traveled across centuries and millennia, only to end up unceremoniously stuffed in a dirt-caked suitcase at JFK,” stated United States Attorney Donoghue. [...] The charges in the indictment are allegations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty. If convicted, Eldarir faces a maximum sentence of 20 years’ imprisonment on each count. 

The seized artefacts 
The damp earth smell could also have been caused by the objects being recently removed from a damp underground storage space. Note the verbal association between the carrier and 'dirt'. There were a variety of objects, typical of the sort of thing collectors seek to add to their collections:
Among the items recovered by law enforcement officers are gold amulets from a funerary set; a relief with the cartouche of a Ptolemaic king that was originally part of a royal building or temple; wooden tomb model figures with linen garments dating to approximately 1900 BCE; and two complete Roman period funerary stelae of the type found at Kom abu Bellou in Egypt.
The indictment contains a fuller list of the objects:
(a) forty-one ( 41) ancient Egyptian gold artifacts;
(b) nineteen ( 19) ancient coins;
(c) two (2) Greco-Roman rings;
(d) thirty-one (31) ancient Egyptian talismans (Ptolemaic period);
(e) fourteen (14) ancient beads;
(f) twenty-six (26) ancient Egyptian wooden figures;
(g) four hundred (400) ancient Egyptian faience shabtis; (h) three (3) ancient Egyptian wooden panels with painted figures;
(i) one (I) ancient Egyptian large stone face;
(j) two (2) Egyptian wooden masks;
(k) two (2) Egyptian stone panels with hieroglyphics;
(1) three (3) ancient Egyptian canopic jar lids;
(m) two (2) ancient Greco-Roman stela;
(n) one (1) ancient Greco-Roman terracotta headless torso with robes;
(o) seven (7) ancient Greco-Roman terracotta statues;
(p) three (3) ancient Egyptian large terracotta vases;
(q) two (2) Egyptian small terracotta vases;
(r) two (2) Egyptian alabaster artifacts;
(s) two (2) ancient Egyptian Osiris headpieces/crowns;
(t) twenty-six (26) ancient Greco-Roman oil lamps; and
(u) one (1) Greco-Roman terracotta pilgrim's flask,
The gold objects (a) and coins (b) are on the white paper in the middle. I can't distinguish the Graeco-Roman rings (c). Twenty three (?) of the amulets ('talismans') (d) are on the white paper sheets in the middle (I don't know why the are all said to be "Ptolemaic"), some of them seem quite big for the type. There are four 'sons of Horus' just above the HS logo. The beads (e) are also on the sheets of paper. There are 21 wooden figures (f) seen, most shabtis, at least one 'concubine figure'/doll, three tomb models, one looking a bit dubious in this photo. Likewise the standing figure on a pedestal at the back looks a bit odd, the face might be a modern modification (?), it is probably a knackered Ptah-Sokar-Osiris figure (and the ostrich plume crown in the foreground possibly belongs to it). I did not count the faience shabtis (g), one group of 'jelly baby' miniatures all over the right hand side are Third Intermediate Period or later and may be mostly from the same tomb - to the left are some slightly bigger and better made shabtis (XIX dyn and later). The 'panels' (k) are actually heavily damaged (recently sawn-up) yellow-painted sarcophagus sides. The 'ancient egyptian large stone face' (i), top centre, looks a bit odd to me. Two 'masks' (j) are the wrenched off faces from mummy-cases (not the same as h). Those two stone panels (k) are presumably the ones next to the three canopic jar lids, cant say much about them from this photo. The canopic jar lids are all stained in a similar way, and might be thought to possibly have come from the same deposit (where's the fourth?) but all three represent Imsety... the two Graeco-Roman stele (m top right) both have freshly-sawn edges). The terracotta figure (n) is next to the sarcophagus bits, five of the other seven (o) are in the bottom left corner. They look a bit nasty, and some may be fakes (one of the ones at the back is a bit out of focus but looks more pre-columbian than anything else - but that's not really my field). I must admit to having a soft spot for black-top Naqada ceramics, dismissively referred to as 'large terracotta vases' here (p) and the third is also probably pre-dynastic too. I can only see one of the alabaster vessels (r), next to the pots. Likewise there seems to be only one horned ostrich-plume crown (it's not an Atef crown) fragment (s) on display. There are 26 lamps on show, but whether or not they are all real or 'Graeco-Roman' (or even from this region), I'll leave others to decide. The flask (u) is presumably the brown cylinder in the front on the left of the photo.

So its all a bit of a mix, material from at least one (Third Intermediate period??) tomb seems to be present, stuff looted from pre-dynastic cemeteries in Middle Egypt, and Hellenistic period sites as well. I suspect though that (as always) some fakes are mixed in too.

One wonders why Eldarir was stopped. It seems this was not the first time, in April last year he'd been stopped and searched and they found an ancient artefact. I guess he did not realise that antiquities dealers are on a watch list in the US. Another clue was the phrase 'dirty suitcases' used by a customs officer. There is also the mention of "loose sand and dirt" spilling out, and "some of the items smelled of wet earth". Was a sniffer dog trained to find antiquities used to check a passenger carrying three unusually dirty suitcases? Looking at this material, I wonder how much room would be left in an average suitcase after this material was crammed into it in bubble wrap. Possibly not a lot. Not enough for clothes for a long stay. Could it be that Eldarir was merely a courier and carrying suitcases packed in advance by a dealer in Egypt (that the suitcases were Egyptian rather than American)?



"The Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir Collection": Item Resold by a Map Dealer (July 2020)


Material from the Eldarin grandfather collection is even turning up on eBay. Seller tassbunch2 (201 ) Robert Tassone ('Maps of Points Renowned' - specialists in antiquarian maps from the 15th through the 20th centuries), Jefferson City, Tennessee, United States has this Ancient Egyptian Polychrome Wall Painting New Kingdom, 19th-20th Dynasty (“Over 3,000 years old -1295-1069 B.C. Amazing Subject Matter !”), Price:US $15,000.00 Buy It Now Shipping:$186.15 USPS Priority Mail International
Ancient Egyptian Polychrome Wall Painting, New Kingdom, 19th-20th dynasty, ca. 1295-1069 B.C. Size: 18 1/4 inches x 15 1/4 inches. (46.35 x 38.73) + mount. Large stele section of a painted wall fragment. Depicting Standing female figure wearing an ankle length garment with broad collar, stands in front of an altar, her right hand raised. The front panel of the altar is painted with a rearing snake. Above are four crown symbols. Restored from two pieces. Custom metal mount. Provenance:Private NYC collection, brought to USA prior to 1948, to present owner by sale.
Now, this is quite interesting for this is lot 485 from the Arte Primitivo ( Howard S. Rose Gallery, Inc.) Fine Pre-Columbian, Tribal Art and Classical Antiquities sale September 18th, 2019 (where it had an estimate of $25,000-$35,000). What however is even more interesting is the next part of the description:

A copy of the pictured letter of authentication is included and is here translated:
It is on the twenty fourth day of April, the year nineteen hundred and twenty nine, 1929 AD.
We the honorable/ Salahaddin Sirmali....Bey  Sold to The honorable/ Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir...Bey A group of ancient Egyptian antiquities. Authenticated and appraised by the ancient Egyptian expert and the head of the Egyptian antiquities house: Mr, Hossen Rashed. For the amount of three thousand Egyptian pound only. Their description as follow: 
- Ptolemaic limestone head for a king wearing the striated royal nemesis fronted by the cobra. It measures 23 cm high.
- Egyptian limestone head for a man with remaining of painting, the back of head are missing. Roman period measuring 14 cm long.
- The upper part of wooden sarcophagus lid of a lady wearing the long winged Egyptian wig, with extended winged Scarbe painted on her chest. The decorated hand are crossed on her chest. Third intermediate period measuring 80 cm long.
- A Greek white marble head of a Ptolemaic king measuring 11 cm long.
- Twenty pieces of tangra art figure, from ptolemaic period. Few are painted and the rest aren’t, different size and shape.
- five wood panels from sarcophagus with a sunk relief of hieroglyphics inscription, different size and shape.
- Four limestone sunk relief, the first one has a cartouche of Ptolemy V, measuring 24 cm wide. The second with hieroglyphics inscription measuring 31 cm wide. The third one has hieroglyphics inscription measuring 22 cm wide. The fourth sunk relief has an image of the falcon hours extending his wings with a cartouche of Ptolemy V behind it.
- Two polychrome painted wall relief over guess. The first with a figure of standing falcon hours measuring 31 cm long. The second with an image of a standing women raising both hand, behind him is a shrine with a figure of a cobra. inside on top of the shrine are four fathers, two on each side measuring 46 cm high and 39 cm wide.
- Twenty papyrus scroll of different size with hieroglyphics inscription.
The seller/Salahaddin Sirmali....Bey
The buyer/Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir...Bey
The Expert and appraisal Mr/ Hossen Rashed.
First of all 'the pictured letter of authentication' probably means that the buyer obtained a coloured copy (xerox, photo?) of the original manuscript. This is confirmed by looking at the photo published in teh auction (one of very few eBay auctions in which such documentation is shown). This of course means that the buyer cannot verify the autjhenticity of the document, for example by examining the paper (watermarks etc).

Now, the names mentioned are of course the names associated with other sales of material from the Eldarir grandfather collection:
1) The seller: Salahaddin Sirmali. He is mentioned on the internet - apparently only - in relationship to the sales of items to a single buyer - the owner of the Eldarir collection. Is he known elsewhere?

2) The grandfather: Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir is also mentioned on the internet only in relationship to the sales of items from a single seller. Is he known elsewhere?  Presumably he left Egypt with the end of the British Mandate for Palestine and the beginning of the Arab-Israeli War.

3)The authenticator: Hossen Rashed again is a name that appears in an internet search related to antiquities only in the context of the items from the Eldarir collection. Is he known from anywhere else?

If we take a look at the letter, we see that in the top right corner it has a 15 millemes postal stamp stuck on. The stamp is of a series current in 1929, but why is it there? Such a stamp might mean that a court or notary fee had been paid, but the document is in no way endorsed by a court or notary, the stamp is not cancelled - and it is a normal postage stamp rather than any official label. Perhaps somebody who knows about contractual processes in 1920s Egypt might enlighten us what this means.

Does the letter suggest that Salahaddin Sirmali worked in the same ' Egyptian antiquities house' as Hossen Rashed? Where was this? What actually was the purpose of this document in 1929? It is far more detailed than any receipt need be.

"The Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir Collection" : One Turns up in Spain (July 2020)


Top, star-in-a-jar, bottom, seller's other items
eBay Seller coleccionrelojes (157) from Ocaña, Spain, has a rather inflated idea of how much a piece of painte plaster from the Eldarir collection might be worth, he or she wants 9.500,00 EUR for this Ancient Egyptian Sandstone Polychromed fragment with a "Seba" or egyptian star.
Extremly rare piece from ancient Egypt. Important Egyptian archeology piece.
Beautifull and brightness fragment of polychromed stone showing a "Seba" or Egyptian Star from a ceilling. Originally found in Rameses II temple area, at Abydos in 1930-35. probably from an Egyptian tomb mummy.
Ca. 2050 - 1750 B. C.
A very impressive and extremely rare archeological beautiful millenary piece.
Certificate Of Authenticity (COA), Object Identification (Object ID) document, Provenence Statement and Independent Ancient Art Expert Appraisal Valuation Document will be provided to the buyer.
Originally purchased to Salahaddin Refik Sirmali in Cairo in 1940, Ex Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir collection.
From 1960-61 in a private collection on Spain till now.
Previous property history, collected from 1960-61.
Expert Appraisal Valuation Dossier is included by an independent ancient art expert.
Pre-1970 UNESCO convention.
Export license IS necessary within the European Union and United Kingdom.
Due to its value and age, is necessary by law an export permit. Seller will arrange all needed permits and paperwork to export from Spain. Exports tax Fees (7%) to add final price. It only may be placed to spanish authorities once sold as buyer details would be needed.
Sadly, I think this provenance is made up, this seller is flogging off two other Egyptian 'antiquities', a fake Sekhmet head with clear signs of angle-grinder work, and a particularly horrible fake mummy mask. These are shown in photos into which other 'egyptian antiquities' can be made out in the background to give the impression that this is an experienced collector/dealer.  I do not think the sandstone looks very convincing either, and would suggest the seller has no documentation to show that this was anywhere near the Eldarir collection, from which it was allegedly sold in the 1960s.

"The Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir Collection": Howard Knowes and a White Faced Mummy Case Fragment (2020)



And here's another dealer helping Mr Eldari get rid of his old grandfather's collection:  Howard Nowes Ancient Art ("Art for eternity", East 81st Street, New York, NY 10028):
13667. Egyptian Wood Painted Sarcophagus Mask Late Period, Circa 712 to 300 BC
A carved hardwood mummy masks (sic), painted with a white ground; a partial high crown with a painted red-brown central sun disc, with traces of ocher, red-brown and blue pigment highlights and details, black outlined eyes and brows. Ancient losses to both sides of crown and a few minor imperfections. Size: 11 inches H. + custom mount.
Provenance: Sold to Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir from Salahaddin Sirmali on 5/15/1930.
Original Price: $3,450  Special Price: $2,995
All items are guaranteed authentic as described.
This one is quite an interesting study piece, it shows what a mummy case looks like after grave robbers have wrenched the face off to sell, where are the ancient human remains, were they treated with more respect than the ancient coffin?


"The Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir Collection": Artemis Gallery, A Whole Mummy Case, a 'mask', Rolls of Papyri (June 4th 2020)


Bab Darge's Artemis Gallery Erie, CO 80516 ("Exceptional Antiquities, Asian, Ethnographic:") Thu, Jun 4, 2020 USA has also been selling parts of the Eldarir grandfather collection, this sale from June 04, 2020



Lot 3, Auction 6/4/2020: Egyptian Polychrome Gesso Coffin Lid - 1946 Provenance $80,925.00
Egypt, Late Dynastic Period, 26th to 31st Dynasty, ca. 664 to 332 BCE. An incredible exterior coffin lid carved from hardwood and depicting a serene countenance atop an elaborately decorated body. Painted gesso atop the lid is decorated to show the red-orange face with almond-shaped eyes and elongated canthi, a protruding nose above pouty lips, and a black chinstrap with a net-patterned false beard. Each wig lappet has vertical stripes of alternating hues with serrated tips, and a wadjet peers out on each shoulder. The huge wesekh collar is replete with checkerboards, blue and red triangles, rosettes, and drop-form patterns. The leg panels show the deceased laying atop a lion-headed table beneath the head of Anubis, flanked by the mourning goddesses Isis and Nephthys, with a sun disc, a winged scarab, and two wadjet eyes in the panel above, and two representations of the god Khnum to its sides. The lower legs display several standing funerary deities flanking three columns of hieroglyphs that perhaps identify the deceased.
Size: 74" L x 18" W (188 cm x 45.7 cm)
[some narrativisation ...] [...]
For a similar example of a coffin lid from the Thirtieth Dynasty with a lower portion beneath, please see Ikram, Salima and Aidan Dodson. "The Mummy in Ancient Egypt: Equipping the Dead for Eternity." Thames and Hudson, London, 1998, p. 241, fig. 324.
For another example of a coffin lid with dense decorations from the 26th Dynasty, please see The Metropolitan Museum of Art, accession number 30.3.44a,b.
For an example of a coffin lid showing the deceased praying to each of the funerary deities, please see The British Museum, museum number EA6693.
Included with the coffin lid is a custom-built display case/stand with a weighted base, mirrored bottom, and silica gel climate control with an integrated hydrometer in the back. The case is ready to accept a sheet acrylic cover and all cover mounting hardware is included, however the acrylic lid is not included with the display case/stand. The case can be taken to an acrylic fabricator to have a form-fitting cover created.
Condition: Loss to small area of lower corner as shown. Lid was cut into three large sections in the 1940s and rejoined by a museum conservator, with light in-fill material and overpainting along joint seams. Abrasions and nicks to gesso, with fading and chipping to pigmentation, and encrustations. Great remains of original painted gesso throughout.
Provenance: private Hawaii, USA collection; ex-private Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir collection, New York, USA, purchased in December, 1946 and imported from Egypt in November, 1948; ex-Salahaddin Sirmali collection, Egypt; appraised by Mr. Hossen Rashed, head of the Egyptian antiquities house
All items legal to buy/sell under U.S. Statute covering cultural patrimony Code 2600, CHAPTER 14, and are guaranteed to be as described or your money back.
A Certificate of Authenticity will accompany all purchases
We ship worldwide and handle all shipping in-house for your convenience.
#155996
At least it has not been sawn up, but only the lid made it to the market. And what happened to the human remains?

He'd also recently sold off a 'Huge Egyptian Late Period Wood & Gesso Sarcophagus Mask'. This one was wrenched off the coffin to make a saleable geegaw from it. "Provenance: private Honolulu, Hawaii, USA collection; ex-private New York, New York, USA collection, acquired by Mr. Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir in Egypt between 1946 and 1948"


And then we have some scrolls. Rare Egyptian Ptolemaic Papyrus Scrolls, Demotic Script Lot 2b being sold at the same time (June 4th 2020)
Egypt, Ptolemaic Period, ca. 332 to 30 BCE. A beautiful and extremely rare set of two tightly rolled papyrus scrolls. Each lengthy scroll is of a slender form, has open ends that reveal the interior layers, and displays several rows of illegible Demotic script written in black ink. For many centuries, papyrus was the most important writing material in the Classical and Mediterranean world, replacing clay tablets. The reeds used to make papyrus grow primarily in Egypt, and the Graeco-Roman world had to import them on a regular basis. Scrolls like these examples were typically manufactured in rolls up to 100 feet long and 7 to 15 inches wide. These scrolls bear wonderful evidence of the crisscrossing fibers that make up the papyrus. Size of largest: 0.875" W x 7.5" H (2.2 cm x 19 cm). [waffly narrativisation] [...] 
Provenance: private Hawaii, USA collection; ex-private Honolulu, Hawaii, USA collection; acquired by Mr. Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir in Egypt in 1929 All items legal to buy/sell under U.S. Statute covering cultural patrimony Code 2600, CHAPTER 14, and are guaranteed to be as described or your money back. A Certificate of Authenticity will accompany all winning bids.
Rare Egyptian Ptolemaic Papyrus Scrolls (group of 3) Lot 2c has the same information.

Possibly the same collector was involved with this (not Eldarir) alabaster head, and this Ming pottery head.

"The Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir Collection" : Isis and the Eldarir Grandfather Collection (April 3rd 2020)



Arte Primitivo 03/04/2020

# 618. Egyptian Large Terracotta Isis-Aphrodite
Estimate: $2,500-$3,500
Current High Bid: $2,000.00
Auction Closed(Final Price) $2,000.00
Category: Antiquities
Sub Category: Egypt - Roman-Egypt
Culture or Country: Egypt.
Period: Ca. 300-30 B.C.
Size: 16-1/4”H. x 4-1/4”W.
Description: Large molded terracotta figure of Isis-Aphrodite, holding her arms to her sides, wearing a polos. Original white slip surface with painted multicolor details. Long hairdo, braids descending down the front. Some normal scattered slip losses, repaired break across her left shoulder (repaired from two pieces) and head reattached, with break lines visible, feet reattached. Some loss to the hair braids and minor losses along the break lines. Repaired break through the hips, head repaired with scattered restoration. A nice example.
Provenance:
Private NYC collection, brought to USA in the 1940s, to present owner by descent. “It is on August 6th, 1929. We the honorable Salahaddin Sirmali...bey sold to the honorable Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir...bey A group of ancient Egyptian, Greek and Roman antiquities. Authenticated and appraised by the ancient Egyptian expert and the head of the Egyptian antiquities house: Mr. Hossen Rashed. For the amount of two thousand Egyptian pounds: A group of the goddess Isis Aphrodite antiquities. Hellenisitic period, ten painted pottery statues of the goddess...plus a lime stone shrine...inside of it a pottery staute of the goddess Isis Aphrodite.”


"The Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir Collection": Harlan Berk and a Wooden Shabti (April 1 2020)


Harlan Berk, a well-known US coin dealer (“The Art & Science of Numismatics”, North Clark Street, Chicago, IL. 60602 [" Dealers in ancient coins, U.S. andworld coins, antiquities, Bullion") also dabbles in selling antiquities, here's one from his "210th Buy or Bid Sale" April 1, 2020:
359. WOODEN USHABTI, New Kingdom, ca. 1567-1085 BC. A well preserved wooden ushabti standing mummiform with arms crossed over the body, wearing tripartite wig. Ex collection of Mr Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir; acquired 1946 from Salahaddin Sirmali, Cairo. Authenticated and appraised by Mr. Hossen Rashed, head of the Egyptian Antiquities house. H. 9” (23 cm)......................1950
This one has an odd patina on it (rather like one sees on modern made African masks from the Congo and adjacent areas that have been distressed to make them look old..).  It's not very nice. The modelling is a bit clumsy, no?

"The Elzadeer Taha Eldarir Collection": Christophe Bacher Resale Items, Figurine and Amulets (Some Sold before 2020)


Christoph Bacher Archäologie Ancient Art GmbH Gallery: Stubenring 1010 Wien. Another item from the dead grandfather collection.
Wooden Standing Figure of a Man
Culture: Egyptian
Period: Middle Kingdom, 2137-1781 B.C.
Material: Wood
Dimensions: 25 cm high
Price: Sold
Ref: 1116
Provenance: Private collection Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir, acquired 1930 at Salahaddin Sirmali in Cairo. Brought to the USA before 1948 and since then in a New York private collection. Condition: The front of the base reattached, arms missing. Some wear.
Description: Standing figure of a man with a calf-length kilt. The face with large eyes, broad lips and broad nose (suggesting a dating to the 11th dynasty), as well as short black hair. He is wearing a hidden amulet (Khepri?) on his chest, the separately worked arms are missing. Original base, as well as intensive color remains are still preserved.
This is lot 397 of the 2016 Arte Primitivo sale

Bacher has had other items from this collection:
Two Diorite Poppy Bead Amulets
Culture: Egyptian Period: Late Period, 664-332 B.C.
Material: Diorite
Dimensions: each 1.7 cm long
Price: Sold
Ref: 1299
Provenance:
Collection Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir, acquired on 15 May 1930 from Salahaddin Sirmali in Cairo and then brought to the USA.
Condition: Intact
Description: Two small diorite amulets in form of a cornflower with a broad flower head and jagged petals. The stem pierced for suspension. Since the New Kingdom cornflowers were worn as symbols for regeneration on necklaces or individually as an amulet.
and this Amulet of a Wadj Sceptre with a Lotus Flower
Culture: Egyptian Period: Late Period, 664-332 B.C. Material: Hematite Dimensions: 5.3 cm high Price: Reserved Ref: 1297
Provenance: Collection Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir, acquired on 15 May 1930 from Salahaddin Sirmali in Cairo and then brought to the USA.
Condition: Except for some minor wear intact.
Description: Exceptional hematite amulet in form of a papyrus sceptre with a crowning lotus blossom. The amulet is tapering downwards. On the rectangular head a finely jagged lotus blossom. The back is flat. On the lower part of the blossom a lengthwise hole for suspension. The papurus stem stands for the word wadj – "to be green, to be young”. The holder of the amulet therefore hopes for everlasting youth. The lotus blossom served as the symbol for protection and sign for regeneration. Rare form.
and so on, the's got a lapis lazuli "heart amulet" (more twee narrativisation, and: "Provenance: Collection Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir, acquired on 15 May 1930 from Salahaddin Sirmali in Cairo and then brought to the USA"). A haematite one, the same format and provenance and yet another one (getting a bit monotonous). Then a 'Rare Wadj Amulet with a Falcon Head' - another one bought on the 15th May...

Mr Bacher has some other items from this same man's collection, and this one seems to be unsold:
A Collection of 230 Faience Ushabtis Period: Late Period, 664-332 B.C. Material: Faience Dimensions: From 5 cm to 12 cm long Price: 28 000 Euro Ref: 1300 Provenance: Collection Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir, on 15 May 1930 from Salahaddin Sirmali in Cairo and then brought to the USA. Condition: Except for some abrasion and wear the ushabtis are throughout intact. Description: Important and large collection of 230 ushabtis of green and light blue faience, where the majority comes from the same grave complex. The figures depicted in mummiform, tripartite wig, false beard and with crossed arms. Most of them are holding the hoe in their left hand, in their right one the plough. Most of the hieroglyph inscription on the front.
If this is a 1930 purchase, how does the seller know these are from the same tomb?

"The Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir Collection": "A Jar of Shabtis" (Dec 2nd 2019)


In December 2019 (sale 96) Arte Primitivo helped Mr Eldari sell off another part of his grandfather's collection:


"The Elzadeen Taha Eldarir Collection": Arte Primitivo Gallery sells some stuff from the Eldarir Grandfather Collection (Sept 16th 2019)


Arte Primitivo Gallery (Howard S. Rose - East 65th Street New York N.Y. 10065) September 16th 2019 sale has quite a lot specifically said to be from the collection of Ezeldeen Eldarir, or apparently from the same source, mixed in with other items:
461. Egyptian Carnelian and Lapis Corn Flower Necklace Egypt. 20-1/4”L. Sold to Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir from Salahaddin Sirmali on 5/15/1930. Authenticated and appraised by Mr. HossenRashed, head of the Egyptian Antiquities house. Est. $6,000-$9,000 Closing: Tuesday, September 17th, 5:08 P.M


485. Mudbrick and Plaster Painted Fragment Egypt. New Kingdom. Private NYC collection, brought to USA prior to 1948, to present owner by descent. Est. $25,000-$35,000 Closing: Wednesday, September 18th, 10:14 A.M.
495. Openwork Lapis Uzat Eye Amulet Egypt. 1”H. x 1-1/2”W. Sold to Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir from Salahaddin Sirmali on 5/15/1930. Authenticated and appraised by Mr. Hossen Rashed, head of the Egyptian Antiquities house. Est. $2,000-$3,000 Closing: Wednesday, September 18th, 10:34 A.M.

496. Necklace with Uzats and Amulets Egypt. 13-1/2”L. Sold to Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir from Salahaddin Sirmali on 5/15/1930. Authenticated and appraised by Mr. Hossen Rashed, head of the Egyptian Antiquities house. Est. $1,200-$1,800 Closing: Wednesday, September 18th, 10:36 A.M.

498. Pair of Bronze Mummy Mask Eyes Egypt. 3”W. and 2-7/8”W. Sold to Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir from Salahaddin Sirmali on 5/15/1930. Authenticated and appraised by Mr. Hossen Rashed, head of the Egyptian Antiquities house.Est. $1,000-$1,500 Closing: Wednesday, September 18th, 10:40 A.M.



499. Faience Ushabtis (228)Egypt. 2 to 4-1/2”H. Sold to Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir from Salahaddin Sirmali on 5/15/1930. Authenticated and appraised by Mr. Hossen Rashed, head of the Egyptian Antiquities house. Est. $15,000-$20,000 Closing: Wednesday, September 18th, 10:42 A.M.  [This lot is discussed further here

500. Mummy Mask with Inlaid Bronze Eyes Egypt. 10-3/4”H. Sold to Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir from Salahaddin Sirmali on 5/15/1930. Authenticated and appraised by Mr. Hossen Rashed, head of the Egyptian Antiquities house. Est. $2,000-$3,000 Closing: Wednesday, September 18th, 10:44 A.M

501. Egyptian White Face Mummy Masks (2)Egypt. 11”H. & 7-1/2”H. Sold to Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir from Salahaddin Sirmali on 5/15/1930. Authenticated and appraised by Mr. Hossen Rashed, head of the Egyptian Antiquities house. Est. $2,000-$3,000 Closing: Wednesday, September 18th, 10:46 A.M. 
502. Egyptian Mummy Mask Egypt. Late Period, ca. 700-30 B.C. 10-3/4”H. x 8”W. Private NYCcollection, brought to USA prior to 1948, to present owner by descent.Est. $2,000-$3,000Closing: Wednesday, September 18th, 10:48 A.M.

503. Egyptian Mummy Mask Egypt. Late Period, ca. 700-30 B.C. 14-1/2”H. x 12”W. Private NY Ccollection, brought to USA prior to 1948, to present owner by descent.Est. $1,200-$1,800 Closing: Wednesday, September 18th, 10:50 A.M

504. Egyptian Bearded Mummy Mask Egypt. Late Period, ca. 700-30 B.C. 15-1/2”H. x 8-1/2”W. Private NYC collection, brought to USA prior to 1948, to present owner by descent. Est. $2,500-$3,500 Closing: Wednesday, September 18th, 10:52 A.M.

505. Group of Egyptian Amulets (50) Egypt. Late period. 1/2 to 2-1/2”H. Sold to Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir from Salahaddin Sirmali on 5/15/1930. Authenticated and appraisedby Mr. Hossen Rashed, head of the Egyptian Antiquities house.Est. $10,000-$15,000 Closing: Wednesday, September 18th, 10:54 A.M. [This lot is discussed further here]

506. Egyptian Faience Amulets (8) Egypt. Late period. 3/4 to 1-1/2”H. Sold to Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir from Salahaddin Sirmali on 5/15/1930. Authenticated and appraised by Mr. Hossen Rashed, head of the Egyptian Antiquities house.Est. $1,200-$1,800 Closing: Wednesday, September 18th, 10:56 A.M  [This lot is discussed further here
511, 512 some dodgy-looking figurines
519. Egyptian Loose Mummy Beads Egypt. Late period, ca. 700-30 B.C. 700 grams. Private NY Ccollection, brought to USA prior to 1948, to present owner by descent.Est. $1,200-$1,800 Closing: Wednesday, September 18th, 11:22 A.M.

520. Egyptian Terracotta Jar and Loose Mummy Beads (100+)Egypt. Late period. 6-1/2”H. (jar), 1/16 to 1-3/8”L. (beads). Sold to Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir from Salahaddin Sirmali on 5/15/1930. Authenticated and appraised by Mr. Hossen Rashed, head of the Egyptian Antiquities house. Est. $1,200-$1,800 Closing: Wednesday, September 18th, 11:24 A.M

521. Ptolemaic Limestone Stele of Ptolemy XII Egypt. Ptolemaic period 13”H. x 18”W. Sold to Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir from Salahaddin Sirmali on 5/15/1930.Authenticated and appraised by Mr. Hossen Rashed, head of the Egyptian Antiquities house. Est. $30,000-$50,000 Closing: Wednesday, September 18th, 11:26 A.M
The plastered mudbrick fragment does not look very convincing to me, and also has turned up on the market again.


"The Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir Collection" : Arte Primitivo and a Whole Lot of Amulets (18th Sept 2019)



Another lot of the Eldari grandfather collection, more amulets:
09/18/2019 Time Remaining: Closed
Lot# and Name:
505. Egyptian Group of 50 Amulets Estimate: $10,000-$15,000
Current High Bid: $3,000.00 Auction Closed(Final Price) $3,000.00
Category: Antiquities
Sub Category: Egypt - Late Period
Culture or Country: Egypt.
Period: Late period, ca. 700-30 B.C.
Size: 1/2” to 2-1/2”H.
Description: Large group of fifty carved stone amulets including, a set of four lapis Sons of Ra amulets, four different fly amulets, two cornflowers, a small three-piece lapis winged scarab, an orange carnelian hippo, ten different stone winged heart amulets, seven scarabs, including one with an inscription and a large lapis example. Three different Djed pillar amulets, three stone Girdle of Isis amulets, a black stone jackal headed column, two miniature votive head rests, and finally ten lotus column amulets. All are intact, overall exc. cond. A great grouping.
Provenance: Sold to Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir from Salahaddin Sirmali on 5/15/1930. Authenticated and appraised by Mr. Hossen Rashed, head of the Egyptian Antiquities house.
And here's some more of the little blighters... Arte Primitivo  506. Egyptian Faience Amulets (8) Estimate: $1,200-$1,800 Current High Bid: $425.00 Auction Closed 09/18/2019 (Final Price) $425.00

Group of eight pale blue-green glazed faience pottery amulets, including an Uzat eye, a nicely detailed Isis holding Horus amulet, A tauret hippo, a lotus flower column, two similar Ptah amulets and a ram headed example, and a baboon(?) amulet. All are intact, some light glaze wear. Provenance: Sold to Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir from Salahaddin Sirmali on 5/15/1930. Authenticated and appraised by Mr. Hossen Rashed, head of the Egyptian Antiquities house.

"The Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir Collection": Arte Primitivo and a mass of Jelly-Baby Shabtis (18th Sept 2019)


Arte Primitivo has some more items from Mr Eldarir's grandfather's old collection:
09/18/2019 Time Remaining: Closed
499. Egyptian Faience Ushabtis (228)
Estimate: $15,000-$20,000 Current High Bid: $11,500.00 Auction Closed(Final Price) $11,500.00
Category: Antiquities
Sub Category: Egypt - Late Period
Culture or Country: Egypt.
Period: Late Period, ca. 700-30 B.C.
Size: 2” to 4-1/2”H.
Description: Group of 228 glazed faience pottery ushabtis of various sizes and types, several with glyph registers down their front legs. Most have weathering a some glaze wear and imperfections, otherwise intact. A great lot for dealers.
Provenance: Sold to Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir from Salahaddin Sirmali on 5/15/1930. Authenticated and appraised by Mr. Hossen Rashed, head of the Egyptian Antiquities house.




"The Elzadeen Taha Eldarir Collection": Sands of Time and a Mummy Mask (March 23rd 2019)


A sale organised by Sue McGovern Huffman (convener of the Association of Dealers and Collectors of Ancient and Ethnographic Art) Washington DC: Young Collectors Auction of Ancient and Asian Art Sale No: 1951 March 23rd, 2019 
www.sandsoftimedc.com Page: 50 of 245

Lot No: 091
LARGE WOODEN SARCOPHAGUS MASK Late Period, ca. 664 - 332 BC

Culture: Egyptian
Dimensions: Height: 22 1/4 inch (56.51 cm), Width: 22 3/4 inch (57.78 cm)
Medium: Wood
Large multi piece carved and pegged hardwood upper portion of a sarcophagus lid depicting a male dignitary wearing the royal wig and beard. Overall scattered remaining traces of the original gesso and painted surface details. Face with some remaining flesh tone surface. Ancient loss to the tip of the nose and beard, some loss to the lower left of his wig. Lower corner reattached.
Provenance: Ashraf Eldarir Collection, New York, USA, acquired by the present owner's grandfather Mr. Souaya in Egypt in 1948, thence by descent. Ashraf Eldarir's grandfather was a friend of Prince of Egypt Omar Tosson, with whom he shared a passion for archaeology. The collection was formed during the 1930s-1940s, mostly gifts from Prince Tosson. The collection was moved to the United States in 1948 and remained in their possession until the present day.Estimate: $12,000 - $18,000
And how would a dealer with the reputation of 'Sands of Time' go about verifying that? Did they?  Does the buyer have a copy of that documentation?

Also on sale in Catawiki and in 2018 in Lot-Art.

Better visible in the back view is how this item was created by sawing the top off a mummy case to make it more transportable. When was this done? What happened to the human remains? Where is the rest of the coffin? Is this what the Association of Dealers and Collectors of Ancient and Ethnographic Art consider ethical and 'preservation'?


"The Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir Collection" Arte Primitivo Has Some More Items (March 6th 2017)


Arte primitivo Catalogue 84  Howard S. Rose Gallery, Inc. Fine Pre-Columbian, Tribal Art & Classical Antiquities East 65th Street New York N.Y. Closes: Monday, March 6th, 2017








"The Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir Collection": Alexander Ancient Art and the Eldarir Collection (2016?)


Alexander Ancient Art (Alexander Biesbroek, Voorschoten The Netherlands) also has something sold from a dead grandfather's collection
Alexander Ancient Art 
A Limestone Relief Fragment Stock number: C1051
Description: Showing three partial columns of well carved hieroglyphic inscription, and traces of a fourth column on the left. The surviving parts of the columns are too short to make a full translation possible or even to be sure about some of the words:
Column 1 (left): I have given air / breath … (or: To give to me air/breath)
Column 2 (middle): … one is strong there in …
Column 3 (right): I have opened both your eyes for you … (followed by a word which could mean eternity, own, bodily, physical, or, alternatively, might be the independent pronoun “he”).
For the uncertainly in column 3 see Penelope Wilson, A Lexicographical Study of the Ptolemaic Texts in the Temple of Edfu (Liverpool, 1991), p. 179. She explains that the translation of the phrase irt= nt Dt= is uncertain; she refers to D. Meeks who took it as “son propre oeil” (An.Lex. 77.0381; 79.0284) and who collected examples from the date of Pepi I; she then gives various interpretations: own eye, eye of eternity, bodily eye, physical eye. In any case, the text comes from a funerary context; the opening of the eyes is also mentioned in the famous ritual for opening the mouth of the deceased.
The fragment possibly comes from the tomb of a man called Wahibrenebahet: it comes from the same collection and is stylistically very close to other fragments that were sold by Bonhams (London) en Arte Primitivo (New York), which all seemed related and on several of which the name Wahibrenebahet is present. Bonhams has suggested that they might possibly be from Thebes, and that Wahibrenebahet probably was a high ranking official connected with the importation of precious metals.
Parallels:
Four similar fragments from the same collection were sold by Bonhams, London, sale of 1 May 2013, lot 320, for an amount of GBP 28,750 (the equivalent of € 34,000).
Dating: Late Period, 26th Dynasty, circa 664-525 B.C.
Size: Circa 29 x 28 cm.

Provenance:
Collection of Ashraf Eldarir, U.S.A., inherited from his grandfather, who was a close friend of the late prince Omar Tosson, member of the Egyptian royal family and a passionate archaeologist. The collection was formed during the 1930s-1940s, and consisted mostly of gifts from prince Omar Tosson. The collection was moved to the United States in 1948 and remained in the family’s possession until they decided to sell.

Condition: Fragment as shown with some minor ancient surface losses, otherwise intact; overall warm ochre-brown surface with scattered deposits.

SOLD
When was this item put on sale? "Always buy with total confidence ! We only deal in artefacts that have been legally acquired and exported from their countries of origin and comply with all international treaties and laws governing the sale of Antiquities." By 1948, the objects could not be legally taken out of Egypt. Mr Biesbroek is being disingenuous about the Arte Primitivio  fragment, the one he is selling was lot 132 of the 2015 sale!

"The Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir Collection": Charles Ede and the Master of Secrets (July 2016)


One of the earlier pieces from the Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir collection to come on the market was this piece being sold by Charles Ede:
30 June - 6 July 2016
Egyptian hieroglyphic relief fragment, Master of Secrets
Old Kingdom, 4th-6th Dynasty, c.2613-2181 BC
Limestone
Height 23cm, width 38cm
Provenance:
Mr Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir, Egypt; acquired 17th June 1941 from Salahaddin Sirmali, Private collection, New York, USA; by decent from the above
ENQUIRE

Enquire indeed, do they have any documents for the above?  The item is also described here in a little more detail:
Egyptian hieroglyphic relief fragment Old Kingdom, 4th-6th Dynasty, c.2613-2181 BC
Limestone Height 23cm, width 38cm.
The crisply carved hieroglyphs in raised relief read ‘Master of Secrets’. Dividing lines below and above, partial hieroglyphs in the lower register seemingly include a bread bun (denoting a feminine gender, or the letter ‘t’), the white crown of Upper Egypt, and possibly a cartouche. The enigmatic title ‘Master of Secrets’ may well refer to the jackal-headed Anubis.
Provenance
Mr Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir, Egypt; acquired 17th June 1941 from Salahaddin Sirmali
Private collection, New York, USA; by decent from the above
Comparanda
For the hieroglyphs see Mark Collier and Bill Manley, How to Read Egyptian Hieroglyphs (London, 1998), p. 157
Oh, please....


"The Elzadeen Taha Eldarir Collection": Arte Primitivo, Sculptures and mummy Beads (May 18th 2015)


Arte Primitivo Howard S. Rose Gallery, Inc. Fine Pre-Columbian, Tribal Art and Classical Antiquities Auction 75  Monday, May 18th, 2015:

128. Quartzite Lower Portion of a Block Figure Egypt. Late period, ca. 700-30 B.C. 5-3/8”H. Private NYC collection, brought to USA prior to 1948, to present owner by descent. Est. $4,000-$6,000 Closing: Monday, May 18th, 2:14 P.M.
132. Limestone Relief Stele Fragment Egypt. Late period, ca. 700-30 B.C. Private NYC collection, brought to USA prior to 1948, to present owner by descent. Est. $7,000-$10,000 Closing: Monday, May 18th, 2:22 P.M.

133. Two Limestone Relief Stele Fragments Egypt. Late period, ca. 700-30 B.C. Private NYC collection, brought to USA prior to 1948, to present owner by descent. Est. $7,500-$10,000 Closing: Monday, May 18th, 2:24 P.M.


134. Bronze Mummy Mask Eyes Egypt. Late period, ca. 700-30 B.C. Eyes, 3-3/8”W. each, brows, 3” and3-1/8”L. Private NYC collection, brought to USA prior to 1948, to present owner by descent. Est. $2,500-$3,000 Closing: Monday, May 18th, 2:26 P.M.

135. Set of Bronze Mummy Mask Eyes Egypt. Late period, ca. 700-30 B.C. Eyes, 3”W., brows, 3-1/8” and3-1/2”. Private NYC collection, brought to USA prior to 1948, to present owner by descent. Est. $3,000-$5,000 Closing: Monday, May 18th, 2:28 P.M

They are depicted upside-down

147. Egyptian Painted Mummy Mask Egypt. Late period, ca. 700-30 B.C. 11-3/4”L. Private NYC collection, brought to USA prior to 1948, to present owner by descent. Est. $2,000-$3,000 Closing: Monday, May 18th, 2:54 P.M.

148. Egyptian Large Mummy Mask Egypt. Late period, ca. 700-30 B.C. 12-5/8”H. Private NYC collection, brought to USA prior to 1948, to present owner by descent. Est. $3,000-$5,000 Closing: Monday, May 18th, 2:56 P.M.

150. Wooden Mummy Mask Egypt. Late period, ca. 700-30 B.C. 10”H. x 7”W. Private NYC collection, brought to USA prior to 1948, to present owner by descent. Est. $1,500-$1,800 Closing: Monday, May 18th, 3:00 P.M.


151. Large Wooden Mask from a Sarcophagus Egypt. Late period, ca. 700-30 B.C. 28”H. Private NYC collection, brought to USA prior to 1948, to present owner by descent. Upper portion of a wooden sarcophagus lid bearing full and well modeled face, aegis and tripartite wig, complete to bottom of lappets. Bears considerable remains of painted gesso over the high relief carved face. Some losses, fading and chips, else intact. Large and impressive. Est. $20,000-$25,000 Closing: Monday, May 18th, 3:02 P.M.



155. Cartonnage Breast Plate Egypt. Late period, ca. 700-30 B.C. 20” x 7-5/8”. Private NYC collection, brought to USA prior to 1948, to present owner by descent. Est. $2,500-$3,500 Closing: Monday, May 18th, 3:10 P.M.

163. Loose Mummy Beads Egypt. Late period, ca. 700-30 B.C. Private NYC collection, brought to USA prior to 1948, to present owner by descent. Est. $2,000-$2,500 Closing: Monday, May 18th, 3:26 P.M.

164. Loose Mummy Beads Egypt. Late period, ca. 700-30 B.C. Private NYC collection, brought to USA prior to 1948, to present owner by descent. Est. $2,000-$2,500 Closing: Monday, May 18th, 3:28 P.M.





"The Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir Collection": Ancient Resource Auctions and a dead Grandfather's Collection (May 4th 2014)


And here's another piece from the Eldarir-grandfather collection: Ancient Resource Auctions Glendale, CA, USA sold May 04, 2014

Lot 0031A  A stunning Egyptian limestone stele, Third Intermediate Period,
Limestone stele depicting a winged sun disk with pendant cobras appearing above three registers, each depicting a pair of rams sniffing lotus flowers. The ram with curved horns had been associated with the cult of Amun since Dynasty XI and likely carries the same association with this stele, H: 11 3/8 in (29cm), W: 10 in (25.3 cm). A fantastic example of Egyptian cult worship.
Ex Ashraf Eldarir Collection, USA, acquired prior to 1948. Ashraf Eldarir's grandfather was a friend of Prince of Egypt Omar Tosson, with whom he shared a passion for archaeology. The collection was formed during the 1930s-1940s, mostly as gifts from Prince Tosson. The collection was moved to the United States in 1948 and remained in the family's possession until the present day.   

"The Ezeldeen Taha Eldarir Collection": The Sell-off Starts - Bonham's and A Dead Grandfather's Collection (1st May 2013)


Bonham's
Eldarir material ended up on Bond Street:
Bonhams, Antiquities 1 May 2013, 10:30 BST London, New Bond Street LOT 320
Four Egyptian limestone relief fragments for Wahibrenebahet
Sold for £ 28,750 (PLN 141,959) inc. premium

Four Egyptian limestone relief fragments for Wahibrenebahet Late Dynastic Period, 26th Dynasty, circa 664-525 B.C.
Possibly from Thebes, inscribed for Smenty Wahibrenebahet, probably a high ranking official connected with the importation of precious metals, joint fragments (a) and (b) with eight columns of text referring to 'night and the hour of the appearance of the beauty of the Sun god', with a squatting vulture-headed deity of the underworld holding a long knife on his knees, named as Great God, 13in x 9in (33cm x 23cm) and 12in x 21in (30.5cm x 53cm); fragment (c) with five columns of text referring to 'the passage of the Sun god and the deceased through the caverns of the Underworld in the night barque and the plunge into the Day barque at dawn', with two squatting deities holding knives, one with ram's head, carved on the right, 17in x 22in (43cm x 56cm); and fragment (d), the smallest, with another baboon-headed squatting deity on the left and two columns of text providing protection for the deceased, 9½in x 11¾in (24cm x 30cm), each fragment individually mounted (4)

Footnotes
Provenance:
Ashraf Eldarir Collection, USA, acquired by the present owner's grandfather Mr. Souaya in Egypt in 1948, thence by descent. Ashraf Eldarir's grandfather was a friend of Prince of Egypt Omar Tosson, with whom he shared a passion for archaeology. The collection was formed during the 1930s-1940s, mostly gifts from Prince Tosson. The collection was moved to the United States in 1948 and remained in their possession until the present day.

Monday, 6 July 2020

The Institute of Detectorists


Keith Westcott states on a metal detecting forum near you  (Mon Jul 06, 2020 2:39 pm):
 I am the Project Lead of one of the largest groups of experts, ever assembled to collectively look into the subject of metal detecting across the UK. Our Project Advisory Board of 24, with a focus in support the British Public, consists of 15 Stakeholder organisations including National Institutes and Trusts, National Museums, National Landowners organisations and Estates, we have as Observers, Government and National Agencies from England, Northern Ireland, Wales, Scotland and Ireland. We have a further Focus Group consisting of 22 Detectorists and Archaeologists. There are 3 of us in the Project Team including Dr Mike Heyworth MBE and Dr Manda Forster of DigVentures. The NCMD were invited to join our Board but, declined. [...] My own motives behind the initiative, are to celebrate not only the fantastic contribution Detectorists can make to understanding and conserving our combined heritage but, promoting the metal detector in the hands of practitioner Detectorists in support of archaeologists. I am for the recording, conservation and preservation of heritage and support all good intentions to that end.
One wonders how many times that Project Advisory Board has met and what has been established, particularly with regard funding. Dr Forster does not mention membership of this body on  her Linkdin page. All very odd. What does it mean "look into the subject of metal detecting across the UK"?

Institute of Detectorists Looking into Insurance


Not as they seem?
Over on a dishonourable metal detecting site near you, the Institute of Detectorists is looking into The NCMD Insurance policy for Individual members » Mon Jul 06, 2020 10:10 am
Is the NCMD Insurance policy for individual members, available for landowners to see?
1st April 2020 to 31st March 2021
Insurance - Summary
Insured Activities – are those ‘authorised and recognised’ by the National Council for Metal Detecting.
Please can I ask through the perspective of landowners: Are all rallies including those requiring NCMD insurance as a prerequisite to participate, 'authorised and recognised' by the National Council for Metal Detecting? and does that effect whether individual NCMD members are insured on all rallies?
Members seem a little reluctant to discuss this with Mr Westcott... wonder why? One Saffron appeals to teh forum's moderators (Mon Jul 06, 2020 12:42 pm):
MODS do we have to put up with the same person, who seems to have ulteria [sic!] motives, repeatedly asking exactly the same question time and time again when they have been told many times by various people (including Mods) to contact the NCMD directly. Although as poster is not even a member of the NCMD, which supports the hobby and represents it on various committees, I feel they would be justified in telling him that "the information he wants is freely available to members".
(moderator: 'We are looking into it Evan [emoticon]') I think all those archaeologists that support the idea of Mr Westcott setting up an "Institute" to resolve all the problems of collection-driven exploitation of the archaeological record might like to consider the reaction of fellow detectorists to him asking a fairly simple question about current detecting practice. Also what is going on here? Is Mr Westcott really thinking about making a bid for his (still non-existent) "Institute" to take over some of the NCMD's functions (such as supplying insurance?). What is his interest in the insurance of commercial rallies? Surely any "Institute" of responsible detecting would be working to STOP destructive commercial artefact hunting rallies rather than promote better insurance for those landowners profiting from them?

 
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