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Archaeology & History

Ancient talisman inscription remains a mystery

By T.K. Randall
October 20, 2018 · Comment icon 11 comments

Sir Richard Francis Burton in 1864. Image Credit: Public Domain
Experts in London have been attempting to decipher the writing on an ancient stone found in the 19th century.
Originally described as a 'meteorite', the stone, which is now believed to be a type of talisman, was discovered in Mesopotamia by prolific explorer Sir Richard Francis Burton.

It was sold on, along with his other belongings, following his death in 1890.

Now, more than 120 years later, researchers in London have confirmed once and for all that the object is indeed terrestrial in origin and have identified the inscription as Kufic - a form of calligraphic Arabic.

They have since appealed for help in deciphering it.
According to Richmond curator Mark De Novellis, the object closely resembles a talisman held at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London and was likely thought to have had supernatural properties.

"If you've got a talisman it is a sacred mystical object," he said. "I've got a feeling that when we get this translated it will be of a mystical or spiritual nature."

"I think it just appealed to Burton's imagination. I think he had that sort of mindset where any stone that is sacred or mystical is potentially extra-terrestrial so he interprets that as being a meteorite."

Source: Independent | Comments (11)

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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #2 Posted by ShadowSot 6 years ago
"If you can read this, you're a nerd." 
Comment icon #3 Posted by Stiff 6 years ago
What if I told you... The inion was already on there when it landed on earth? 
Comment icon #4 Posted by aniknonymous 6 years ago
this made me laugh more than it should
Comment icon #5 Posted by third_eye 6 years ago
Then it goes without saying that the subsequent line should be "Contains no artificial flavors or ingredients" ~
Comment icon #6 Posted by DanL 6 years ago
The State of California has determined that possession of this substance may be harmful to your health.
Comment icon #7 Posted by Jon the frog 6 years ago
Look like an old Sumerian transmission knob...
Comment icon #8 Posted by kobolds 6 years ago
look to me like a stamp. what so strange about, if it made from meteorite . Tutankhamun's knife was made from meteorite iron.  
Comment icon #9 Posted by Aardvark-DK 6 years ago
Put it on a stick, and Saruman is free once again....
Comment icon #10 Posted by paperdyer 6 years ago
It says I'm stranded on Alpha Centauri.  Please send help!"  Signed Gilligan
Comment icon #11 Posted by MyOtherAccount 6 years ago
It says,

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