The Prince and the Plunder

A book on how Britain took one boy and piles of treasures from Ethiopia

Gold disc showing crucifixion

Published / by Andrew Heavens / Leave a Comment

What: Gold disc “from the cross on the altar at Magdala” showing the crucifixion, bought from Col W J Holt

Where: The British Museum, Great Russell St, Bloomsbury, London WC1B 3DG

Photo: The British Museum charges people to reproduce images of things in its collection, even plundered things. My budget won’t stretch that far, so you’ll have to go to the museum website to see the disc as it looks today –

Provenance: One of three gold discs described in the museum’s temporary register as “from the cross on the altar at Magdala”

Details and references:
Museum number: Af1900,0711.1
See AOA Archive – letters from Colonel Hunt regarding the purchase, 9 June, 3 & 14 July 1900
According to The New Annual Army List, Militia List, and Yeomanry Cavalry List – 1890, “Colonel W. J. Holt … Served in the Abyssinian campaign in 868, as Provost Marshal at Zoula, and subsequently in the Transport Train ; was attacked by a large force at Belago Pass whilst in charge of Convoy and his conduct on the occasion met with the entire approval of Lord Napier (Medal and promoted to Captain, unattached).”

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