A fine Eastern Pende Panya-Gombe African mask. Coll.: David Norden
found at GG2.NET NEWS [14/10/2004]
They include a 17th century jewelled jade flask, for which the sheikh paid almost £3m ($5.39m), a flywhisk of banded agate and inset with rubies valued at almost £919,000 ($1,653,608) , a ceremonial dagger set with gems worth almost £750,000 ($1,349,783) and a hukkah priced at more than £97,000 ($174,577).
Yesterday, arts minister Estelle Morris ordered a two-month export ban on four pieces to give British buyers the chance to match the auction price.
The committee that recommended the export ban was said to be concerned about the possibility of the jade flask going to Qatar.
It is likely the ban will be extended if a serious fund-raising attempt is in place by December 13.
Robert Clive was sent to India aged 18 as a clerk for the East India Company where later in his career he took command of a Company military force, proving himself to be a good tactitian.
He won fame and was lauded as a National hero in Britain when he defeated the Nawab of Bengal at the battle of Plassey (North Bengal) in June 1757.
He later became British governor of Bengal, and one of the founders of British rule in India.
However his huge personal wealth resulted in an accusation of financial irregularities, provoking a debate in Parliament.
He never recovered from the scandal, and the depression that had plagued him throughout his life resulted in his suicide in November 1774.
His jade flask, once part of the collection at the imperial court in Delhi, was loaned to the Victoria & Albert Museum in 1963 by Vida Schreiber, who had inherited it from her first husband, Viscount Clive.
After her death the family sold it and loaned the three other pieces to the Clive Museum at Powys Castle in Wales.
All were bought by the sheikh who is estimated to have spent £15m ($27m) on buying the Islamic-inspired treasures.
Indian Beading: Of all the peoples who have made beadwork a part of their culture, it's arguable that the Native Americans have brought it to its highest artistic levels. Many people think only of wampum and necklaces when they think of Indian beading, but traditionally there's much more to it than that. That's the topic we explore in the following article.
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