Monday, July 11, 2005

More on the Marzeah Papyrus

Stephen Goranson forwards this link to a site claiming that Raffi Brown (one of the indicted co-conspirators in the forgery scandal) was the forger of the Marzeah Papyrus and the Ivory Pomegranate. I have no idea whether the information on the site is good or bad — the wild writing style does not inspire confidence — but since the Marzeah Papyrus has been previously discussed here, I pass the link along for readers to sift through on their own. (I also feel that there are other incautious statements on that site that may be libelous. Caveat emptor.)

If any readers have independent knowledge of these claims, I'd be interested in hearing from you.

UPDATE: Joe Cathey summarizes a recent report in the Israel Exploration Journal on the Ivory Pomegranate.

1 comment:

Robert Deutsch said...

In the early Eighties, Mr. Rafi Brown, former chief conservator at the Israel Museum, and later a licensed antiquities dealer active in Jerusalem, received the famous inscribed pomegranate from its former French owner for cleaning and conservation.

Mr Brown stated that he washed and cleaned the pomegranate, injected
glues in its cracks, cleaned and deepened its inscription with an iron tool, and covered the surface with a coating in order to increase the inscription's visibility. This was the routine at the time; all artifacts displayed at the Israel Museum, specially the inscribed artifacts, were treated as such.

The findings by the Tel Aviv University expert, Prof. Yuval Goren et al., published in the latest Israel Exploration Journal, confirm exactly the handling described above, and contradict his conclusions about the
authenticity of the inscription on the pomegranate.

The pomegranate, and the inscription on it are both 100% genuine !

As to the genuine Marzeah Papyrus -to claim that Rafi Brownd forged it, is really pathetic.

My very good friend and mentor, the late numismatist Dr. Leo Mildenberg stated:
"To declare a fake coin as genuine is a mistake, but to declare a genuine coin as a fake, is a crime"