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AFROMET - The Association for the Return of The Maqdala Ethiopian TreasuresDetail from the amulet of Emperor Tewodros
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the treasure
Studland's cross

A processional cross taken at Maqdala is currently kept at the Norman church of St Nicholas, in Studland, in the English county of Dorset. According to one report, the church rector at the time obtained permission from Emperor Haile Selassie to keep it.

An entry on the British Orthodox Church website reads:

On 4th October [1997] Abba Seraphim paid a fraternal visit to the beautiful Norman Church of St. Nicholas at Studland in Dorset to view their processional cross which had originally come from Ethiopia. He and his companions from the Bournemouth Church, received a very warm welcome from the parish priest.

The Ethiopic inscription records that the merchant, Baruch Baro, gave it as a votive offering to the Church of Our Lady in Gondar. Looted during the Magdala campaign of 1868, when General Napier led a British Expedition against the Emperor Theodore, it was subsequently presented to the Church at Studland. A former Rector had the foresight, however, to rectify any irregularities by seeking permission from the late Emperor Haile Selassie, whilst he was living in exile near Bath, for the cross to stay at Studland in perpetuity.

The cross is regularly used, beautifully maintained and obviously a greatly treasured possession and inspired a former Rector to write:

"O Cross, Thy power was proved to save
In Ethiopian lands;
O Cross, at home be still my guide:
Lead higher, Pierced Hands."

Current location

St Nicholas Church, Studland, Dorset, UK
treasure count:
468 items
still missing
10 items
(still counting)

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recent discoveries

Cameronians' cross
Reed shirt
Lancaster miscellaneous
Halifax miscellaneous
Throne cloth
Dundee scroll

full list of

missing treasure
returned treasure

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human remains
military hardware
personal effects
religious artefacts
royal regalia

current locations

The British Library
The British Museum
Duke of Wellington's Regimental Museum Halifax
Dundee University Museum
Edinburgh University Library
The John Rylands Uni Library
Lancaster Museum & Priory
National Archives of Scotland
The Sch°yen Collection
The Victoria & Albert Museum
Windsor Castle

Other locations

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