AUD $520.00
  • Sold Out! - Sorry

Ethiopian Coptic Cross, hand held

Sorry, this cross is on hold until mid March 2015, if you're after it let us know.
A large hand held, double ended, Ethiopian Coptic Christian  hand held Cross, of dull silvery “tinned” pierced and cut brass.
I saw a doco the other day, where the Priest carried one of these and the Ethiopian Pilgrims each it when it was held out to them, in blessing ritual.

Classic Ethiopian Cross, “primitive” in it’s form, often they are mistaken for Celtic, but not this one, is  quite ornate in it’s drilling and filing style, you could with ingenuity wear it on a cord, as a very large pendant.

The shaft is hollow and has definite Architectural overtones, possibly recalling their towers and rock cut Churches..

It was cut from a sheet of metal, the design first scribed, then holes are drilled and sawn into shape and filed. The cut out is based on a wrought iron window grill, which would have circles held together with metal wraps, which are in this case simply cut out rather than constructed
The surface has a weathered slightly brassy/silverish patina with many dark scratches and patches, but would only need a light rub with a dry cloth ocassionally to bring it up a bit.

How often have I heard the public muttering about these crosses being Celtic, (the similarities are obvious, but I think all cultures who worked with thonging and basketry, could have come up with these solutions.)
Often designs are transposed from earlier techniques, like basketry designs used in turn painted or imprinted on pottery, before they had metallurgy, then inherited again in the newer medium. In Europe for example, wooden beams were copied in stone when newer materials were used.
A continuity of earlier traditions and styles, the Tibetan “endless knot” being another example.

If you were desperate you may try polishing it but at present it has acquired a mellow almost brassy patina, that suits it beautifully.

Age: Mid/Late 20 th century.

Size: L 364 mm x W 119 mm x D 25 mm

Weight: 390 grams