On Antiques Roadshow, a man was shocked to find out how much a family gift was worth. The piece the man brought in was unique, to be sure, but he had no idea what exactly it was that he had. He just liked the way it felt in his hand.
The man explained that he’d gotten the piece from his wife’s 99-year-old aunt, who had gotten it from her father. That’s about all he knew of the piece. But Antiques Roadshow appraiser Anthony Slayter-Ralph was really excited. It should be noted that when referring to the piece, Slayter-Ralph used the outdated term “Eskimo,” as opposed to the more acceptable “Inuit.”
Slayter-Ralph said it was a piece of art, but it also had functionality. He believed the piece to be the handle of adze, or a type of axe. Slayter-Ralph also said it was made of walrus tusk, which could have been an issue if it were not so old. He said the piece is probably from the 12th to 15th centuries A.D., predating a 1972 law that would have made it illegal by several hundred years.
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