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To celebrate Vikings Live, we have replaced our Roman alphabet with the runic alphabet used by the Vikings, the Scandinavian ‘Younger Futhark’. The ‘Younger Futhark’ has only 16 letters, so we have used some of the runic letters more than once or combined two runes for one Roman letter.

For an excellent introduction to runes, we recommend Martin Findell’s book published by British Museum Press.

More information about how we have ‘runified’ this site


South Africa Landscape

Kew at the British Museum

Admission free  |  West lawn, Museum forecourt

Mountain aloe

Mountain aloe

Aloe marlothii

Aloes have been cultivated for thousands of years and usually grow in mountainous areas. More about this plant on www.kew.org

Related object in the collection

Embroidered bark cloth

On display in Room 25

This design was created on a rectangular piece of bark-cloth using raffia stitching, pigment and different colours of bark-cloth.

The predominant motifs are the aloe vera plant, local houses and kneeling women. The focus of this work is on the medicinal value of 'ekigaji', the aloe vera plant.

Read more on the collection database


Mountain aloe © Richard Wilford, Stephen Ruddy, RBG Kew
Embroidered bark cloth entitled Ekigaji (Aloe vera), made by Proscovia Nabwami, 2008 © Trustees of the British Museum

Embroidered bark cloth


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