Tag Archives: ancient

These text/graphics objects are possibly 40 000+ years old. Found in Australia. More here.

Made in the Huari culture of Peru, sometime between year 750 and 1000.

Works from the Paracas Culture in Peru from around 800-100 BC. Looted photos of looted objects.

These grid-like cave paintings were apparently made by neanderthals, some 60,000 years ago.

Some archeologists now suggest that the vikings were heavily inspired by islam and made their own Arabic square kufic script. Read more here.

Double bird from Peru, ca 1600 BC. From On Weaving by Anni Albers, 1965 (pdf).

Various indigenous Mexican works, photographed at the National Museum of Anthropology in Mexico City.


Cloth Designs. Found in the Internet Archive by AnitaNH

By the Cayapa Indians of Ecuador, from a book published in 1925.


Medieval dachshund – Or: drawing with words

Here are three examples of a technique called “micrography”: decorative scenes that are drawn with words written in a tiny script. While there are examples from Latin books made in the West (here is one), the technique is particularly common in medieval Hebrew manuscripts. The drawings are usually found in biblical manuscripts and they appear to be commentaries to the text. The technique, whereby a scribe wrote in the smallest handwriting possible, goes back to the 9th century AD. The examples here, from the 13th century, shows just how entertaining the word-made drawings can be: they are an opportunity for the scribe to frolick in the margins of the page – like drawing a creature that looks like a dachshund.

Pic: London, British Library, Additional MS 21160 (13th century, more about the manuscript here). More about micrography here.


Baybayin Script
Ancient pre-colonial 
Philippine writing system
13th–19th Century