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  #1  
Old 01-29-2012, 03:13 PM
Quintas Quintas is offline
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Anybody know what this carved stone may be?

It's a stone carved into a snakes head. This was found mixed in with a load of stones for a driveway. Location: East Coast USA.

http://i.imgur.com/91CI6.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/B0kjv.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/1gacT.jpg
  #2  
Old 01-29-2012, 03:28 PM
aruvqan aruvqan is offline
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Take it to a local museum.

Frequently small items were dropped or abandoned and end up in the detritus that gets dug up and used for gravel. Frequently gravel is 'mined' in riverbeds, and small rocks can be picked up and carried by meltwater.
  #3  
Old 01-29-2012, 04:18 PM
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Medusa was looking too closely at her hair.

Or more seriously, I think some of the East Coast tribes revered snakes; it might be a ritual object of some sort.
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Old 01-29-2012, 04:23 PM
jnglmassiv jnglmassiv is offline
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I don't know what it is but I like it a lot.
How big is the stone?
  #5  
Old 01-29-2012, 04:46 PM
Shagnasty Shagnasty is offline
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That is really cool. I found references to another Native American snake head rock but it is from North Dakota.

http://www.arrowheads.com/index.php?...id=7&Itemid=89

I will give you $100+ shipping for it right now (seriously).
  #6  
Old 01-29-2012, 05:00 PM
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To me that looks much more like a salamander head than a snake head.

It is pretty damn cool all the same.
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Old 01-29-2012, 05:08 PM
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Very cool. And it is definitely stone, and not ceramic?
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Old 01-29-2012, 05:32 PM
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Place a nickel or quarter next to it and retake the pic.
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Old 01-29-2012, 05:44 PM
ratatoskK ratatoskK is offline
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Wow, that is so cool! (to repeat what everyone else is saying!)
  #10  
Old 01-29-2012, 06:07 PM
Simplicio Simplicio is offline
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Chance of that thing being cursed: 100%
  #11  
Old 01-29-2012, 06:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blake View Post
To me that looks much more like a salamander head than a snake head.

It is pretty damn cool all the same.
My first thought was "frog", but salamander is probably better given the neck. Still, amphibian.
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Old 01-29-2012, 07:05 PM
aceplace57 aceplace57 is offline
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Could it be the top piece of a scepter or staff? Did Indian chiefs carry those?
  #13  
Old 01-29-2012, 07:13 PM
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After its Cleaned up it would make a nice paperweight for your office. A 1/4 cup bleach in a pail of water and some brushing should clean it up.

Last edited by aceplace57; 01-29-2012 at 07:18 PM.
  #14  
Old 01-29-2012, 07:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Crafter_Man View Post
Place a nickel or quarter next to it and retake the pic.
This.

And to me, it looks like the head of a turtle I used to have.
  #15  
Old 01-29-2012, 07:21 PM
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Looks more like a salamander than a snake. But that may be the best the artist could do with the medium.
  #16  
Old 01-29-2012, 07:29 PM
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After its Cleaned up it would make a nice paperweight for your office. A 1/4 cup bleach in a pail of water and some brushing should clean it up.
Oh dear god, please no. You don't take any unusual artifacts and 'clean' or improve on them to make them into paperweights. That is rule #1 when dealing with something of this sort. It may or may not be valuable but you made me and lots of other people recoil at the thought. If it does have any historical value, that is the fastest way to fix that pesky problem.

My cash offer still stands by the way.

Last edited by Shagnasty; 01-29-2012 at 07:31 PM.
  #17  
Old 01-29-2012, 07:58 PM
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I didn't think a toothbrush and some water would hurt a rock. I'm sure it got rained & snowed on in the woods.

I see your point that as a historical artifact the patina matters and shouldn't be disturbed. I'm sorry for giving bad advice.

Last edited by aceplace57; 01-29-2012 at 08:00 PM.
  #18  
Old 01-29-2012, 08:12 PM
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Very cool. And it is definitely stone, and not ceramic?

its also magnetic: http://i.imgur.com/Hwky2.jpg

Lodestone perhaps?
  #19  
Old 01-29-2012, 08:29 PM
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In the first photo it looks like the area of carving around the eye is weathered distinctly less than the immediately adjacent stone, maybe indicating a not so ancient origin (?). The other photos not so much, so maybe it's just the way the photo is. Nonetheless, more votes for cool, don't clean, and show it to a museum or university type. Might also want to see if you can find out where the load of stones came from. Fun way to spend a day, picking through a pile of rocks where there might be ancient artifacts.
  #20  
Old 01-29-2012, 08:34 PM
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It is really cool. Imagine how close it came to being lost forever as part of a driveway.
  #21  
Old 01-29-2012, 08:52 PM
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Chance of that thing being cursed: 100%
This.

Contact your local police department and ask if there's any correlation between recent grisly unexplained murders/house fires and newly gravelled driveways. And don't give it as a gift to anyone you care about. However, do see if you can palm it off on a sworn enemy.
  #22  
Old 01-29-2012, 09:03 PM
Patty O'Furniture Patty O'Furniture is offline
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its also magnetic: http://i.imgur.com/Hwky2.jpg
Definitely cursed.
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  #23  
Old 01-29-2012, 09:43 PM
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To be clear, in the magnet picture, that's some other permanent magnet holding it, right? Does it stick on its own to plain steel? If it's holding its own weight like that against ordinary steel, it's almost certainly of modern origin.
  #24  
Old 01-29-2012, 09:45 PM
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To be clear, in the magnet picture, that's some other permanent magnet holding it, right?
Yes.
  #25  
Old 01-29-2012, 09:58 PM
Digital is the new Analog Digital is the new Analog is offline
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I love that it's hanging in front of a picture of itself.


-D/a
  #26  
Old 01-29-2012, 10:00 PM
Rhythmdvl Rhythmdvl is offline
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Stay away from the Frogurt.




And what the hell is that thing holding it up in the second picture? A giant coloured locust with a magnet in its thorax?
  #27  
Old 01-30-2012, 01:36 AM
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Stay away from the Frogurt.




And what the hell is that thing holding it up in the second picture? A giant coloured locust with a magnet in its thorax?
Yes it is. 'Magnetrax' spawned when OP first touched the stone. Please just ignore him for now.
  #28  
Old 01-30-2012, 04:14 AM
aceplace57 aceplace57 is offline
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The Indians may have seen magnetism as spiritual. A medicine man may have carved the stone and used it in rituals. A rock that could move another rock (iron ore) would have been very powerful magic in a pre-industrial society.

Even today people are selling magnetic bracelets for pain.

Last edited by aceplace57; 01-30-2012 at 04:14 AM.
  #29  
Old 01-30-2012, 08:05 AM
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That's really cool! Please keep us posted, OP, about what (if anything) eventually happens to this piece!
  #30  
Old 01-30-2012, 12:00 PM
Quintas Quintas is offline
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Beside a coin, to show it's size.

http://i.imgur.com/kTE7O.jpg

Last edited by Quintas; 01-30-2012 at 12:01 PM.
  #31  
Old 01-30-2012, 02:20 PM
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Chance of that thing being cursed: 100%
Good point. Isn't this how The Exorcist started?
  #32  
Old 01-30-2012, 02:30 PM
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Good point. Isn't this how The Exorcist started?
Oh crap. Well it was nice knowing you Quintas. I'd avoid eating any pea soup for a while.
  #33  
Old 01-30-2012, 08:36 PM
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{snip} I will give you $100+ shipping for it right now (seriously).
Ninja'd!...and outbid.

But seriously, those are wicked cool carvings.
  #34  
Old 08-25-2012, 10:32 PM
the_diego the_diego is offline
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Do not try to clean, apply toothbrush, or apply some sort of chemical to clean. Part of the surface already looks weathered. With luck, experts might still be able to date it and identify its place of origin.

And no, don't use it as a paperweight or even let too many hands hold it.
  #35  
Old 08-26-2012, 02:17 AM
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If you are taking bids, I'm there.
  #36  
Old 08-26-2012, 02:20 AM
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http://www.arrowheads.com/forum/indi...358-snake-head
  #37  
Old 08-26-2012, 02:42 AM
Leo Bloom Leo Bloom is offline
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Another one, on Flickr:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/atleise...7623339045071/
  #38  
Old 08-26-2012, 02:46 AM
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Frog model?
http://io9.com/frog-people/
  #39  
Old 08-26-2012, 03:26 AM
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Is there some law that says all antiquities and archaeological artifacts automatically belong to the Federal Gov't, or anything like that? If you take it to a museum to inquire about, will they confiscate it?
  #40  
Old 08-26-2012, 02:42 PM
tomndebb tomndebb is offline
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Given its clearly magnetic aspect, I wonder if it is not a cast iron ornamental piece from an andiron or boot scraper or similar object. It might be quite old, (although not older than European settlement), or it could be fewer than 100 years old, simply weathered from being mashed in with gravel.

As to snake, turtle, or amphibian, etc., while it may not be anatomically correct for a given genus, there is no evidence, (yet), that its maker had any knowledge of various anatomies.
  #41  
Old 08-26-2012, 02:53 PM
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Beside a coin, to show it's size.

http://i.imgur.com/kTE7O.jpg
I'll give you 25 for the coin.
  #42  
Old 09-23-2018, 01:08 AM
Ldb1171 Ldb1171 is offline
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I have been collecting indian stone tools and portable rock art for years. I to have found two rocks that are carved into snake/turtle heads. Although not as detailed as yours.I wish i could get some info on them. I also have so many other native rocks that i would love to know more about. If theres anyone interested in seeing pics and has knowledge on indian rocks please let me know. Thanks
  #43  
Old 09-23-2018, 01:17 AM
Lucas Jackson Lucas Jackson is offline
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Given that the OP is still active, how about an update?
  #44  
Old 09-23-2018, 07:08 AM
albino_manatee albino_manatee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aceplace57 View Post
After its Cleaned up it would make a nice paperweight for your office. A 1/4 cup bleach in a pail of water and some brushing should clean it up.
do NOT bleach it or clean it. i'd suggest bringing it to local museum or, better yet, contact archeological curator.
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  #45  
Old 09-24-2018, 09:56 AM
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Well it appears like the eyes are anthropomorthised.. made human looking..
If you decide that is the case, its an asian thing to do.. the previous owner was chinese tradition, perhaps born in the year of the snake.

I dont think there is much to it. perhaps look to see if there are any tool markings. Looks dremel carved to me.. like a small hand held cutter with a tiny cutting wheel ...

Last edited by Isilder; 09-24-2018 at 09:57 AM.
  #46  
Old 09-24-2018, 10:01 AM
Lucas Jackson Lucas Jackson is offline
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Based on the last two replies, I thought I post a notice that this thread is originally from 2012.
  #47  
Old 09-24-2018, 12:07 PM
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The OP has been active recently.

Quote:
09-20-2018 12:23 PM
  #48  
Old 09-24-2018, 12:48 PM
Lucas Jackson Lucas Jackson is offline
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Thus my noting it in post 43:
https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb...2&postcount=46
  #49  
Old 09-24-2018, 01:04 PM
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Ahhh, ninja'd, sorry
  #50  
Old 09-24-2018, 03:41 PM
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But he can only type with the rattle at the end of his tail.
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