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Curious History:  Momento Mori - A Reminder of Death, 1500s

One side of this carved ivory head shows a human face crawling with worms; the other side shows a skull crawling with toads after the worms have eaten away at the flesh. Not much is known about this model, but it is thought that it is a memento mori – literally a reminder of death and the shortness of life. The skull was the symbol of death from the 1500s onwards. Previously death was represented as a skeleton accompanied by a living victim.

(Source: sciencemuseum.org.uk)

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  21. blacklightfloater reblogged this from caprileothevirgin and added:
    Very cool. My skull necklace is kind of my momento mori too. Also, sculpted worms!
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