No, no - not that ancient, but at least 60 years old, this strange little head looking - to me anyway - like one of these tiny shrunken heads that have had hot sand poured into them or something. And don't ask me why it found its way back into my life this evening, because I don't really know. It's been there all along, of course, lurking in the sideboard among the rarely-used china; before that it reposed in the same sort of place in my parents' house, in among the china because that was a safe place. I have a feeling it may also have sat for a while on a mantlepiece, but it got rather dusty and I was paranoid about someone knocking it down ...
But what on earth is it, do I hear you ask? It's the product of my youthful passion for all things to do with Ancient Rome, coupled with a foray into modelling with a sort of plasticine-like material that came out when I was about eleven. I can clearly remember how I made these heads - for I made several - using a round pencil as my main tool, and a small penknife and the nib of an old-fashioned dip pen. It was a sort of purple colour at the time, with marbling through it because I'd squashed several bits of the material together. Later, when I'd stopped fiddling with it, I decided it should be somehow finished off with a coat of black - and I think it was shoe restoring polish that I put on it. It's mounted on a 1955 coin, which may be 15 French francs - it's certainly French.
And tonight it's certainly the most interesting photo I have from today, having spent most of my time packing, shopping, driving, unpacking and collapsing in a post-prandial stupor.