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Ligabue Magazine n° 74
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The ancient Dipo glass bead tradition - The colourful materials of Venetian glassmaking furnaces blend in with local customs in Krobo coming of age rites in GhanaIrene Fornasiero

A thin “thread” connects the skills of Venetian master glassmakers to Odumase craftsmen in eastern Ghana, internationally acknowledged for their excellent production of glass beads. If we rewind the thread, it conjures up the flourishing age of domestic and overseas trade between the kingdoms of Wes... "Read More"

* This article is contained in Ligabue Magazine n° 69

Piedras Negras: heart of the Maya world - Archaeologists and scientists use new technologies to record and safeguard the remains of the empire of the eleven “ holy lords” in GuatemalaJames Doyle

Shrouded in the Guatemalan jungle overlooking the Usumacinta River lie the ruins of the ancient Maya city of Yokib, known today as Piedras Negras ("Black Rocks" in Spanish). One of the most important dynastic royal courts in the Classic Period (c. AD 250-900) flourished at Piedras Negras from the 5t... "Read More"

* This article is contained in Ligabue Magazine n° 69

Coffee and forks: from Venice to the whole of Europe - For centuries some everyday customs we now take for granted were first adopted in the “Gateway to the East”Alessandro Marzo Magno

“To live cheerfully, many are in the habit every morning of drinking a certain black water, made with opium, which usually chases away all thoughts and common sense; and if those who are addicted to it tried to stop, they would die immediately, since their nature is already dependent on this beverag... "Read More"

* This article is contained in Ligabue Magazine n° 69

Custodians of dreamed images - Kota reliquary figures in the Congo and Gabon, a visionary world in Equatorial AfricaLouis Perrois

My first research trip to Gabon, made in the autumn of 1965, was devoted to the Kota of the Makokou and Mekambo areas. It wasn’t directly focused on their ancestor figures, which had already fallen into disuse several decades earlier, but rather on their initiation rites for adolescents - the satsi.... "Read More"

* This article is contained in Ligabue Magazine n° 68

Eating your foes or heroes - The little-known, complex story of cannibalism in the peoples of the Lesser AntillesAndré Delpuech

At the end of the 15th century, when the Spanish first arrived in the Caribbean area, groups of American Indians were living on the Lesser Antilles, at least from Trinidad to Guadeloupe. Known as “Island Caribs” and immediately dubbed “cannibals”, they are mainly only remembered for their warlike ap... "Read More"

* This article is contained in Ligabue Magazine n° 68

Automatons, robots, androids… - The modern quest for immortality in legends, toys, films and new monstersCarlo Montanaro

The only absolute certainty we have in life is that we shall die. Not surprisingly in all ages humans have systematically attempted to find ways of overcoming that certainty and aspiring to immortality. Leaving aside more or less immanent and visionary religions, in practical terms the only bodies t... "Read More"

* This article is contained in Ligabue Magazine n° 68

A corner of the Levant on the Grand Canal - The Fondaco dei Turchi was a residence, warehouse and trading centre for the Turks in VeniceFabio Isman

In Venetian historical documents Sa'dullah Idrisi, or Saddo Drisdi, is not just one of the innumerable Levantine merchants who arrived in the Venetian Republic, almost irresistibly attracted by the business opportunities. From 1250 until at least the mid-17th century, when Dutch and English merchant... "Read More"

* This article is contained in Ligabue Magazine n° 68

Dangerous journeys - The devastating impact of some animal species unwittingly or deliberately spread by humansAlessandro Minelli

Over the last few centuries cats, dogs, rats and mongoose have disembarked from ships crossing the oceans in search of land still not marked on maps, exotic places where Europeans came to acquire spices so valuable that they could even spark off wars. Unfortunately, the arrival of an alien species c... "Read More"

* This article is contained in Ligabue Magazine n° 68

Exploring the art of ancient America. The world that wasn’t there, the Ligabue Collection in FlorenceAdriano Favaro

On seeing gold and jade artefacts newly arrived in Spain, the ambassadors of Europe were deeply impressed and expressed their amazement in letters to their sovereigns and governments. The great artist Albrecht Dürer wrote: “These things are more beautiful than wonders … In my lifetime I have never... "Read More"

* This article is contained in Ligabue Magazine n° 67

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