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Vintage Ethiopian Healing Scroll - Ink on Vellum - Personal Collection - $215 (Mesilla)

Vintage Ethiopian Healing Scroll - Ink on Vellum - Personal Collection 1 thumbnailVintage Ethiopian Healing Scroll - Ink on Vellum - Personal Collection 2 thumbnailVintage Ethiopian Healing Scroll - Ink on Vellum - Personal Collection 3 thumbnailVintage Ethiopian Healing Scroll - Ink on Vellum - Personal Collection 4 thumbnail
We are retired couple now in our early 80s who have been collecting folk art, ethnographic objects, antiques, etc. for over 60 years. From the mid-1960s through the early 1970s we lived in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. We travelled extensively, both within Ethiopia and to other African countries. Enjoying our travels, but also actively seeking out and acquiring objects when we had the opportunity. But that was then. Now: We recently sold our large retirement home and have moved into much smaller accommodations. Not surprisingly, we need to do some serious downsizing. Too much stuff!

It is time for us to help some of our objects find a new Happy Home.

This listing is for an old, and absolutely authentic Ethiopian healing scroll. These objects are often popularly called “magic scrolls”. The scrolls are individually created for specific persons to cure or ward off sickness, to provide protection from demons, and to counter evil spells cast by rivals or enemies.

I purchased this scroll in Addis in 1967 from one of the many stalls in the central Mercato. It is written in Ge’ez on vellum, probably goatskin, and illustrated with three images. The top-most image is the Holy Archangel Michael. As the Commander in Chief of the Heavenly Hosts, and the Angel who defeated Satan, he is a powerful protector. The central and bottom images combine Christian and talismanic images that have healing and protective properties. Included is a custom made display and mounting board which has significant value of its own.

I have over a dozen of these scrolls purchased at various times and locations. As well as many other folk art objects, devotional and ethnographic objects, Coptic manuscripts, jewelry and other objects of personal adornment, etc.

This scroll is about 5 inches wide and 65 inches long.


Some additional background information:

In Ethiopia customized protective scrolls that interweave sacred imagery with textual prayers have been prescribed by traditional healers for over two thousand years. These are carried on the person of the individual to whom they are specifically dedicated to shield them from harm. Often the customized content of a scroll is astrologically determined. The iconography of the scrolls alternate between talismanic images and representations of saints, angels and archangels shown in the act of fighting demons. The images are modeled on the seal of God that was revealed to King Solomon and feature geometric patterns intertwined with stylized representations of multiple visages and eyes that indicate prayers for divine intervention. As works of art, the scrolls display influences from Muslim, Jewish, and Christian sources.

Thank you for viewing.


post id: 7754174760

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