Precious Agatha Christie ivories to go on show in London
Wednesday 09 March 2011
Precious ivory artefacts which crime author Agatha Christie cleaned using her face cream after her husband had excavated them have been bought by the British Museum, it was reported Tuesday.
The prolific author was present at excavations directed by her second husband, Max Mallowan, in the former Assyrian capital of Nimrud.
Preferring to undertake a less physical role, Christie said she used "an orange stick, possibly a very fine knitting needle... and a jar of cosmetic face cream... for gently coaxing the dirt out of the crevices without harming the friable ivory."
While at the site, Christie stayed in a room separate from the workers' tents where she penned several novels including "Hickory Dickory Dock."
The museum paid 1.17 million pounds (1.89 million dollars, 1,36 million euros) for the 3,000-year-old objects, which were uncovered by Mallowan between 1949 and 1963 in what is now northern Iraq.
The items, carved from African elephant tusks, include a lion's paw and a lifesize human ear.
The city was built in the 13th century BC by Assyrian king Shalmaneser I before becoming the capital of the Assyrian Empire five hundred years later.
The empire encompassed modern-day Iraq, Lebanon, Syria, Kuwait and Jordan, and around half of Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Iran.
Neil MacGregor, the museum's director said: "Not only are they beautiful but they clearly carry in them a whole set of stories."
Some of the 6,000 pieces will go on display at the museum from next week.
Review: Imaginative storytelling returns with vigourfilm
Bannatyne leaves Dragon's DenTV
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Howard Jacobson: Let's see the 'criticism' of Israel for what it really is
- 2 Game of Thrones author George RR Martin says 'f*** you' to fans who fear he will die before finishing Westeros saga
- 3 Belgium fan Axelle Despiegelaere lands L'Oreal campaign after World Cup viral photo
- 4 Britney Spears sings 'Alien' without Auto-Tune in embarrassing leaked audio clip
- 5 PornHub begs users to stop uploading video clips of Brazil getting beaten 7-1
Sustained immigration has not harmed Britons' employment, say government advisers
Australia facing international condemnation after turning around Sri Lankans at sea
7/7 memorial defaced on anniversary of 2005 attacks with ‘Blair lied thousands died’ graffiti
Even when it brutalises one of its own teenage citizens, America is helpless against Israel
Socialist Worker called to apologise over ‘vile’ article saying Eton schoolboy Horatio Chapple's death is ‘reason to save the polar bears’
There’s a nasty smell in the political air – and it’s coming from the Tories