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Home > Auctions > 24th May 2022 > Elamite Chariot Wheel Fittings

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LOT 0321

GBP (£) 3,000 - 4,000
EUR (€) 3,500 - 4,670
USD ($) 3,750 - 5,000

Sold for (Inc. bp): £5,980



A complete Elamite or Assyrian chariot wheel rim, comprising six large bronze C-section wheel clamps, each clamp with three pairs of lateral lugs and attachment rivets for insertion over the wooden wheel and three pairs of inward facing rivetted double tabs; mounted on a wooden replica spoked wheel. 31 1/2 in. (6.6 kg total, 80 cm wide). Fine condition.

UK private collection before 2000.
UK art market.
Property of a London gentleman.
Accompanied by an archaeological expertise by Dr. Raffaele D’Amato.
This lot has been checked against the Interpol Database of stolen works of art and is accompanied by AIAD certificate no.11259-189515.

See Stillmann N. & Tallis N., Armies of the Ancient Near East, 3000 BC to 539 BC, Worthing, 1984; Emiliozzi, A., Carri da Guerra e principi etruschi (War chariots and Etruscan princes, in Italian), Roma, 1999, pp.5ff.; Caubet, A. & Yon, M., ‘Pommeaux de chars, du Levant à la Mésopotamie et à l’Élam’, in Études Mésopotamiennes: Recueil de Textes Offert à Jean-Louis Huot, Paris, 2001, pp.69-78; Gökce, B., 'On Urartian Chariots' in Veldmeijer, A.J. & Ikram, S., Chasing Chariot/Proceedings of the First İnternational Chariot Conference (Cairo, 2012), Cairo, 2013, pp.107-122; a similar wheel in the National Museum of Iran in Tehran, and was excavated from Choqa Zanbil, an ancient Elamite site in Khuzestan province of Iran.

In Mesopotamia and other regions of the Near East, the chariot was preceded by vehicles with disc wheels, with two or four wheels, pulled by a pair of donkeys or mules. The light, two-wheeled, horse-drawn chariot with spoked wheels was introduced into the Levant early in the 2nd millennium B.C. (Caubet and Yon, 2001, p.71), and from there the Canaanites (“Hyksos”) brought it to Egypt. Five innovations gave the chariot its superiority: the spoked wheels, exclusive use of traction by horses, the creation of the horse bit, the use of the bow as a primary weapon associated with the chariot and the proportions suitable for a couple of passengers standing side by side on the chariot’s platform. In 7th century B.C., the Elamite chariots were drawn by two or four mules or small horses. The crew consisted of a driver and up to three archers, who sat or knelt on the platform.