Too far to visit Afghanistan? No worries: this year through July 3, 2011, the British Museum in London opens up the mountainous country with the exhibition, Afghanistan: Crossroads of the Ancient World, including artefacts on loan from the National Museum of Afghanistan in the capital of Kabul.
Sponsored by the Bank of America Merrill Lynch, the exhibit features objects of the British Museum as well as more than 200 artefacts from the National Museum of Afghanistan, currently undergoing renovation. Artefacts include Roman glass, polychrome ivory furniture inlays from India, classical sculptures, jewelry and polished Egyptian tableware, revealing the trade between Afghanistan and neighboring regions, including Central Asia, Iran, India and China, as well as coastal trade throughout the Mediterranean Sea.
Look for the oldest gold object, from the site of TepeFullo, dating around 2000 B.C., from trade with ancient Iran and Iraq. Three sites in Northern Afghanistan, Ai Khanum, Tajikistan and Begram have unveiled gold and other precious metals dating between 3rd century BC and 1st century AD. We like the exhibit's gold crown found in the tomb of a nomad.
For more information, visit www.britishmuseum.org/whats_on/exhibitions/afghanistan.aspx.