This 15-inch high chunk of elephant just sold for $8,547,979. It’s 750 years old, give or take. I wish I had a better picture. But for something so old and fragile, it seems to be in great shape. You can read a bit (not a lot) more here.

It’s nice enough, I suppose, but it doesn’t really speak to me. What do are the Lewis Chessmen:

Andrew Dunn, creative commons

There 78 of them, mostly carved from walrus ivory some of whale teeth. They’re even older than the Virgin: twelfth century, some think. Probably made in Trondheim. But no one’s certain. No one’s certain, either, about where exactly they were found, or when. They were retrieved (apparently “under mysterious circumstances”) from Lewis in or before the nineteenth century.

One of my favourites is the Beserker:

Rob Roy, creative commons licence

Substitute the shield for my First Generation Kindle and that could have been me the other day.

Against the day I make (or steal, or win, or am given–I’m not picky) a billion dollars, this is going on my acquisition list. What’s on yours?