Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Every daughter loves her mommy (or was that 'mummy'?)

Mummy of Artemidorus
As a bit of a 'mothers day' treat to myself, I met steve for lunch downtown, and then headed off to the British Museum for a few stolen hours [i am on a quest to learn something from everyone of the rooms there before we return to Victoria].

Keeping with the mother's day theme, i headed off to the Egyptian room to check out some mummy's. Imagine my surprise when I ran across this beauty of relic!  check out the name!  Artedimorus!
'are you my mother'?

Get it?  "ARTE"dimorous?    Not everyone has a mother named ARTA.  and not many daughters face such a challenge in trying to find their mother's names in the traces of history!  I face a similar challenge with my wonderful mother in law, since VERLAINE is also a bit uncommon, but at least I can find her name in the poems of Paul Verlaine (when my french is up to the task)
And so, standing in the middle of the British Museum, my mind flipped back to one of the much loved books of my childhood, "Are You My Mother?" (does anyone else remember that one?  where the little bird falls out of the nest and goes in search of its mother, asking cows, cats, dogs and construction equipment if any of them are its mother?)  So... i felt the same way here: like a daughter who expectedly got to spend some time with her mummy!   

Inscription from the Palace of Darius...
Having had that small piece of sharing time, imagine my surprise when I headed off to the Ancient Iran room, and wandered past their reconstructed version of the facade by the stairs leading up to the Palace of Darius.
Yes!   ARTAxerxes!

The inscription is written in honour of King Artaxerxes III.  Seriously?!   ARTA-xerxes?  Twice in one day?


  1. I, too, have been on the same search for my name.

    1. When I was a child we received a church magazine at our house called "The Children's Friend". One of the editors was Arta M. Hale. I must have been a close reader, even in those days, to have found my name there.

    2. Kelvin's retirement association is the Alberta Retired Teachers Association (ARTA).

    3. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arta,_Greece
    A friend from the library who travelled a lot sent me a card from Arta, Greece, a small town of about 20,000 people.


    P.S. You absolutely wore out Eastman's book, "Are You My Mother?" Did you ever find your own mother in the search through those pages?

  2. I have had a delight tour of both your blogs this afternoon as I waited for Evan Melchin to come to discuss his recent essay with me. Arta's name ties us all together: and I'm the hansome beau!

    Kelvin, Dad, etc.


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