Bovine and Fish(y)bones

Haberlin Plate 99

This bar has been recorded as a fake. And I found it in draw labeled as fakes in Glasgow still.

These photos are just camera snaps, not what I take with my DSLR and lightbox, but I was just browsing at this point in the visit.

The bar has been in my head making noise there for a while. This post is intended to get out my thoughts. I have a hunch that numismatic forgeries of cast bronzes may have been modeled in some cases on book engravings. This is a wild guess.

This is from Carellii 1850, but the digitized version of this book is terrible so this image was taken in the ANS library.

The style of engraving on Carellii’s plates has intrigued me. Like many other engravings the artist often draws what they think ought to be there (not unlike Thucydides’ approach to historical speeches in his histories).

I decided to chase the reference which led me here:

Passeri 1767.

This engraver has clearly seen a bar similar to the one in Glasgow if not the same bar the text says the following.

Joannellius supplied Passeri with a drawing of a specimen found beyond Todi and kept in the Museo Masciolio (do you know where or what this was? do tell!). Similar bars are said to be in the Pembroke Museum and another said to be in the Treasury of San Genovese according Spanhiem, but the latter in very poor condition. For all my skimming of Spanhiem I’ve not (yet) found this testimony. I was reading 1.4. It’s an disquisition on the great coin collections and collectors Europe so interesting none the less.

I guess my question is if this bar has been known for so long is it more likely to be authentic rather than a misguided replica…. When does the fake trade in aes grave really get going historically…?

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