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Home > Auctions > 24th November 2020 > Western Asiatic Cylinder Seal Group with Contest and Seated Figure Scenes

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LOT 1565

Estimate
GBP (£) 400 - 600
EUR (€) 440 - 660
USD ($) 520 - 780

Opening Bid
£360 (EUR 396; USD 467) (+bp*)

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Bid History: 0

Western Asiatic Cylinder Seal Group with Contest and Seated Figure Scenes

31st-10th century BC

A mixed group of cylinder seals, limestone (2), jasper (1), serpentine (1), each drilled vertically for suspension, and each accompanied by a museum-quality impression and a typed and signed scholarly note issued by the late W.G. Lambert, Professor of Assyriology at the University of Birmingham, 1970-1993, which states: 'Seal of black stone with green streaks. The scene shows a contest group of five figures, all on their hind legs. In the centre is the hero, succouring on each side a horned animal, which is being attacked by a lion. A lunar crescent serves as a terminal above the two lions' tails. This is an Akkadian seal, c.2300-2200 B.C., from Mesopotamia or an adjacent country. It is worn, but the design is clear. The display of a hero wrestling with bare hands is a sign of the ethic of this military dynasty of Akkad. (151)'; 'Seal of black stone. The main scene shows a seated figure on the right, on a stool with crossing struts. He is holding up a cup(?) in one hand. Facing him is a standing figure with legs at side holding up one hand with something apparently held in it. Between these two figures is a stand with objects on it. Other items are: an upside down feline, a sideways horned animal, a heraldic eagle, and two shapes. A palm tree serves as a divider. This is a seal from the Levant, c.1200-1000 B.C. It is a rare scene, and in quite good condition. (36)'; 'Seal of frit with some turquoise glaze. This is the top only of a seal showing a large bird in front of a tree and another motif consisting of lines and dots. Along the top a ladder pattern runs. This is part of an Elamite seal from the middle period, c.1300-1100 B.C. It is in reasonable condition for frit. (2003)'; 'Seal of offwhite stone. The design is a pattern of lines: a band of criss-cross has its diamonds cut by horizontal strokes. This is in the Sumerian Jemdet Nasr style, c.3000 B.C., and comes from Mesopotamia or south-west Iran. It is in good condition and is a nice example of its kind, save for a spot of damage to one edge.' 24 grams total, 19-24mm (3/4 - 1"). Fine condition. [4]

Provenance
The Signo collection, the property of a West London businessman, formed in the late 1980s-early 1990s; item number 36, 151, 2003, W-116; academically researched and catalogued by the late Professor Lambert in the early 1990s; and accompanied by one original and three copies of typed and signed scholarly notes by the Professor.