I finally managed to spend a day in the British Museum.
We were supposed to go to the Wellcome Collection to see an exhibit on brains but on Monday the exhibit was closed so we walked down the road and hit the British Museum.
I was looking for the Gates of Ishtar that somehow I got into my head were at the British.
Disappointment greeted me when I realised that not only they weren't there but they are stored at the Pergamon Museum in Berlin.
Back to London here's the University of London. Such a beautiful façade.
[from the British museumWebsite]
John Dee (1527-1608/9).
After his death, some of Dee's manuscripts passed into the hands of the antiquary Sir Robert Cotton (1571-1631), whose collection was one of the founding collections that formed the British Museum in 1753.
The two smaller wax discs shown here are all that survive of the original four which are recorded in the Cotton manuscripts (now in the British Library) as having supported the legs of Dee's 'table of practice'. The larger one, the 'Seal of God' (Sigillum Dei) corresponds exactly with a drawing in Dee's manuscripts. It was used to support one of Dee's 'shew-stones', the polished translucent or reflective objects which he used as tools for his occult research. All three wax discs are engraved with magical names, symbols and signs.
Time and its importance:
Despite not finding the gates, the wonders stored in the British left me speechless.
My heart was pounding at the sight of the great Ishtar:
The day sealed by a visit to Govinda in Soho to eat some food at the hare krishna and then a couple of pints at The Intrepid Fox.
A pearl of a day