Fragmentary offering stand decoration of a man carrying a copper ingot - ROM2003_606_1


Fragmentary offering stand decoration of a man carrying a copper ingot

Medium:Cast bronze
Geography: Cyprus
Date: about 1200-1150 BC
Period: Late Bronze Age (Late Cypriote III A)
3.89 x 6.19 cm
Object number: 995.144.1
Credit Line: Gift of R.E. Hindley. Certified by the Canadian Cultural Property Export Review Board under the terms of the Cultural Propery Export and Import Act. Attestée par la Commision Canadienne d'examen des exportations de biens culturels en vertu de la loi su l'Exportation et l'Importation de biens culturels.
On view
Gallery Location:A.G. Leventis Foundation Gallery of Ancient Cyprus
DescriptionAround 1200 BC major waves of Mycenaeans from mainland Greece immigrated to Cyprus bringing with them Greek language, customs, and religion. Greek and near Eastern influences are seen in this fragmentary bronze relief from that time. The piece vividly depicts a man carrying a copper ingot. His face is sculpted with a large frontal eye on a profile face. Yet the ox-hide shape of the ingot is typically Cypriot. c The corners were drawn out into handles for ease in carrying. A break above the ingot-bearer’s head suggests that this figure originally formed part of a larger object—namely a four-sided stand with each side decorated with different figures. Such stands were very rare and were probably used in a temple for religious purposes, perhaps as a dais to hold a libation bowl. A few of the stands in museum collections today rest on four wheels and may recall objects mentioned both in Homer and in the Hebrew Bible. Considering the limited technology available at the time, the stands were considered technical marvels. They were exported to Crete, Sardinia, and the Levant, where they were highly prized. In the Aegean, particularly on Crete, the stands were imitated in both clay and bronze well into the first millennium BC.
Greek World
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