'Ten Commandments' Tablet Props for Sale
Bonhams auction house has an upcoming Entertainment Memorabilia auction which will feature the original red granite tablets created for the film The Ten Commandments.
At the behest of director Cecil B. DeMille, the tablets were carved from genuine red granite from the Sinai peninsula. According to Bonham's "The size of the tablets was based on the "six handbreadths" dimensions
given in ancient descriptions, the writing on the tablets is in an early
Canaanite script used in the 13th century B.C."
Because the granite props were too heavy to be used in the film, "Paramount's prop department made three sets of tablets out of fiberglass." The granite tablets were kept in the office of Cecil B. DeMille.
The Ten Commandments was DeMille's final film. He had a serious heart attack during its production in 1956 but completed the film, against doctor's orders, after just one week off. He died three years later in 1959.
Other items from the film's production are included in the auction. The iconic props cross the auction block May 5th in Los Angeles. The tablets are estimated to bring between $30,000-$50,000.