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A very odd Victorian curiosity, a section of the tree that the Scottish physician, Congregationalist and pioneer Christian missionary David Livingston was buried under.
It's believed that Livingston died from Malaria on the 1st May 1873, in Chief Chitambo's village at Chipundu (today in Chitambo District), near the edge of the Bangweulu Swamps in Zambia. His body was embalmed and his heart was buried there under a mpundu tree by his followers. His body was shipped backed to England along with his diary and was later buried at Westminster Abbey.
Our section of the mpundu tree bears a paper label reading...."This piece of wood is part of the tree at Chitambo.....Bangeolo Central Africa. Under which was buried the heart of David Livingston May 1873"
Along with the paper label is the wax seal of the The British South Africa Company with their symbol of a Lion holding a tusk in the centre.
The tree had fallen to decay by 1899 and was replaced with a monument, another section of the tree is housed at The Hunterian Museum Glasgow, it was originally given to his grandson, Hubert Wilson, who donated it to Anderson College where Livingstone studied medicine. It was displayed there for many years before being transferred to the Hunterian Museum in 1992 when the Anderson College building was redeveloped.
Age related discolouration to the paper label, a small section of the seal has dislodge and lost. Small hanging hoop of the verso.
14cm in length
7cm in height
8cm in width