Ex-Voto Limbs, Algeria


Transferred from the Wellcome Institute in 1985; 1985.52.274 and 1985.52.275
Cast in a white metal and perforated so that they could be hung at a shrine, these two limbs are Roman Catholic ex-votos. They were acquired sometime during the French rule of Algeria (1830–1962), and signify the presence of Christianity in a Muslim land.
Christianity first arrived in North Africa in the 1st or early 2nd century AD. It was eclipsed by Islam during the 7th century, and was not reintroduced in Algeria until 1838. As part of the process of French colonisation a diocese was established in Algiers, the capital of Algeria. Immigrants from France, Italy and Spain soon arrived in the country, and a large cathedral named Notre Dame d-Afrique (Our Lady of Africa) was built overlooking the Bay of Algiers. 
Connected Objects: Ex-Voto Eyes

Artisans of Memory

Behind the scenes of an amulets project

This series of short films follows the progress and practices of those connected with the Small Blessings project as they unravel the stories surrounding these curious objects.

The full series of films may be viewed here.


Amulets Competition

The competition is now closed and a winner has been announced. Find out more here.

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