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Home > Auctions > 5th March 2024 > Roman Bronze Wild Boar Chariot Fitting Pair

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LOT 0171

GBP (£) 2,000 - 3,000
EUR (€) 2,340 - 3,510
USD ($) 2,530 - 3,800

Current bid: £1,470 (+bp*)
(18 Bids, Reserve met)

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(18 Bids, Reserve met)   |   Current bid: £1,470
8 7/8 in. (1.13 kg total, 22.5 cm high including stand).

Matched pair of chariot fittings, each formed as the head and forelegs of a boar with open mouth and prominent tusks, developing to a crescentic square-section body with knop finial, supported on a column and square-section tiered base; mounted on custom-made display stands. [2, No Reserve]

Ex Ancient Art, North London, UK.
From a collection acquired on the UK art market from various auction houses and collections mostly before 2000.
From an important Cambridgeshire estate; thence by descent.

This lot has been checked against the Interpol Database of stolen works of art and is accompanied by search certificate no.12058-212073.

Cf. chariot fittings in the form of the foreparts of horses in the British Museum, London, under accession no.1873,0820.165; a very similar example is visible in the Museum of Stara Zagora, Bulgaria, in two bronze decorations with boar's head from a chariot found in Trite Mogili locality, cf. V.I.Ignatov, Funeral complexes with carts in the Roman province of Thrace (mid 1st - 3rd century c.), Sofia, 2018, pl.26, for this one and other similar examples (especially

The fittings were possibly part of a decoration of a Thraco-Roman chariot. Sometimes the ends of the yokes were covered with bronze toppers geometrically shaped or decorated with figures of a lion, a wild boar (our example), a goat, etc. Often, instead of these toppers, there were the so-called bronze distributors. Some were without decoration and others had geometric decoration. The most common ones were those sculpted as two opposing panthers (rarely lions).