Saturday, July 13, 2013

Can a Statue Be Cursed? My Encounter

Photo Courtesy of ImTyUk 2013
I had said last month this was going to be my topic for July, so it was fortuitous that the 3000 year old statue of  Neb-Senu in the Manchester Museum started mysteriously turning in its display case every night. In the mornings the statue will be found with its back facing out, while the other statues on the same glass shelf haven't budged an inch. The statue rotates exactly 180 degrees each night and not an inch more. Speculation surrounds the fact that the back of the statue is inscribed with a request for bread, beer, oxen and fowl and has taken to turning around so people will see his demand. Maybe he's worked up quite an appetite in all those centuries?

Photo Courtesy ImTyUk 2013
I don't get any vibes from looking at photos of Neb-Senu. If he's cursed, he's pretty mild about it. I recently had a statue in my house - briefly - that seemed to be really something else.

Since I write paranormal romance books set in Ancient Egypt, I'm always on the lookout for what I call "Egyptiana" - replicas of Egyptian statues or jewelry, or items with Egyptian themes, ranging from vintage advertising to Disney snowglobes. I like to use the items as illustrations for blogs and sometimes as the topic of the blog post, as with my Dick & Liz Cleopatra and Mark Antony Paperdolls from the 1960's.  I can't afford the real stuff, which belongs in museums anyway!

Recently I bid for and won an unusual statue of the Crocodile God Sobek on eBay. There's no photo of it to share - sorry. The eBay photo is long gone and I never took even one shot with my camera. Before I tell you what happened the day the box arrived, let me preface the story with the fact that my family is of Irish descent and the women, including me, have a touch of the "sight." No, I can't pick lotto winners or tell your future, but from time to time I get "feelings" or outright psychic flashes and I absolutely pay attention to them.

So when the mailman delivered the box, I eagerly tore into the wrappings and soon was lifting the statue out onto the table. I couldn't put it down fast enough. My two cats left the room in a hurry. I had a definite sense of unease and foreboding. Now I love Sobek. He's become kind of a good luck charm for me, since my first published book, "Priestess of the Nile",  had him as the hero. I have a variety of representations of him. So it wasn't anything to do with the fact that this was the Crocodile God.

The statue was about 12" tall, in a black stone or resin and depicted an unusually cruel-looking Sobek, half man, crocodile headed, with a much smaller woman standing in front of him, classic Egyptian sculptural style. I have no reason to believe it was anything but a replica of a genuine artifact.

And it made me extremely uneasy. Gooseflesh uneasy. I didn't even take it into the room upstairs where I keep my collection, to think about it for a day or two. I did not want this statue moving upstairs. OK, I thought, I'll put it in the Goodwill box for now and then eventually I'll give it to them. As I went to place the statue in the box, it was almost as if someone standing next to me said don't keep the statue in the house at all, not even overnight. So I didn't. I put the thing outside, on the opposite side of the iron gate and in the morning I detoured on my way to the day job to put the statue in the nearest Goodwill collection spot less than a mile from home.

(My theory is that the charities do so much good that their blessings cancel out any less-than-benign influences, ok?)

I pondered this for a day or two and then I e mailed the eBay Seller to ask if there was anything unusual about the statue, or any history about it that he might be aware of. I made it clear I wasn't going to return it. He said that his wife and daughters were extremely "upset" by the statue, wouldn't let him keep it and insisted he sell it immediately! He said it never bothered him to look at it. And that was all the information there was to be had.

So,  dear Reader, what do you think?


Susan said...

Yep, it needed to go! I love watching Haunted Collector with John Zafis and he takes items that have paranormal issues. But I don't think I would have wanted to hold on to it until I could contact him! LOL!!

Veronica Scott said...

No the feeling was VERY clear that I couldn't even let the statue stay in the house overnight!