27 - 28 June 2006
MAGIC SCROLL, in Ge'ez, DECORATED MANUSCRIPT ON VELLUM
[Ethiopia, second half of the 19th century]
approximately 2060 x 78mm, 4 membranes, column of text written in black and red ink in a neat traditional hand, THREE TALISMANIC DRAWINGS: an 8-pointed star with a central face of a cherub; a guardian angel; an abstract development of the common 8-pointed star image, in black and brown (some areas rubbed with loss of ink or pigment, notably to first image and some text in lower membrane).
Amulet scrolls carry magic formulas and prayers for the protection against the Evil Eye, malevolent spirits or physical ailments. These spells are in textual and figural form. The Seal of Solomon, represented in varying forms, seen here in the first image of a face within an 8-pointed star, and in its abstract form in the last image, scares away demons. The present scroll contains various prayers against barya, légéwon, various forms of the evil eye and ailments such as rheumatism, indigestion or stomach pains, and cramps. The name of the original owner has been erased and replaced with that of Wälättä Sellasé or Wälättä Täklä Haymanot.
Contact Client Service
New York +1 212 636 2000
London +44 (0)20 7839 9060
Asia +852 2760 1766
This is one of only three such historic newspapers confirmed to still exist — and it is the first time that one of them has ever been offered at auction
A 360-degree view of important works from the Renaissance to the 20th century ahead of our four auctions in Paris this May, including a drawing from Tiepolo’s Punchinello series, illustrated books by Picasso and an 18th-century equinoctial sundial
Mark Wiltshire, Associate Specialist in Science & Books, walks us through the history of Christianity’s most influential printed text
Our Books and Manuscripts specialists advise on a richly rewarding and ever-evolving collectors’ market
With her high-piled ringlets, gold earrings and heavy black kohl, the woman portrayed in this funerary painting offers a glimpse of life almost 2,000 years ago
Christie’s specialist Valérie Didier reveals the story behind one of Théo van Rysselberghe’s most progressive works