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Western Asiatic Elamite Gold Hero Roundel

Antiquities - Western Asiatic


LOT 0317

Estimate
GBP (£) 20,000 - 30,000
EUR (€) 22,830 - 34,240
USD ($) 27,580 - 41,380

Opening Bid: £18,000 (EUR 20,546; USD 24,825)
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WESTERN ASIATIC ELAMITE GOLD HERO ROUNDEL
Mid 2nd millennium BC

A gold roundel with head of a hero or Humbaba figure to centre, long hair parted down the middle, ending in three curls on each side; head separated from a row of seven recumbent rams by double rope-pattern band; outer border with double rope-pattern; to the back, bronze roundel with traces of attachment loops. 128 grams, 83mm (3 1/4").

Condition
Very fine condition. Rare.

Provenance
From an important London W1, collection; formerly with Boisgirard and Heckeren, Nouveau Drouot, Paris, 24 September 1981, lot 165; previously acquired before 1970; accompanied by copies of the relevant Boisgirad and Heckeren catalogue pages. Accompanied by X-Ray Fluorescence metal analysis certificate number 00943-2018WR.

Literature
For an example once in the Schimmel Collection, now in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, with a similar facing head surrounded by seven rams, but with only the bitumen core preserved, see no.73. bis in Hoffmann, ed., The Beauty of Ancient Art, The Norbert Schimmel Collection; also see The Metropolitan Museum of Art, accession number 1989.281.24.

Footnotes
The Elamite kingdom comprised the lowlands areas of Khuzestan, along with the immediate highland areas to the north and east. Elamite strength was based on an ability to hold these various areas together under a coordinated government that permitted the maximum interchange of the natural resources unique to each region, with the king ruling from the city of Susa. During the Middle Elamite Period, Elam became one of the great military powers of the Middle East with large areas of Mesopotamia and Babylon under their control. The power of the Elamites was eventually broken by the revolt of Babylon under Nebuchadnezzar I. Hero figures seem to have played an important religious and social role in a number of Mesopotamian cultures, appearing on a number of objects, most notably cylinder seals. Three great heroes are known, Gilgamesh, Lugalbanda and Emmerkar, each of whom seems to have been based upon a real character, a hero-king favoured by the gods. These hero figures usually undertake a series of tasks to safeguard their people and cities, often fighting demons so as to establish order.

Date
Tuesday 22nd May 2018 to Sunday 27 May 2018: Ancient Art, Antiquities & Coins

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Lot No. 0317

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Auction Catalogue


Auction Venue:
Crystal Room,
May Fair Hotel,
Stratton Street,
London, W1J 8LT

Viewing from noon Monday 21st May 2018
Champagne Reception: 6pm - 9pm

Tuesday 22nd May 2018 (Day 1)
10am : Lots 1 - 520

Auction Venue:
The Court House
363 Main Road
Harwich, CO12 4DN

Auctions start 10am BST (Lunch 1.30 - 2pm)
Wednesday 23rd May 2018 (Day 2)
Lots 550 - 1190
Thursday 24th May 2018 (Day 3)
Lots 1191 - 1831
Friday 25th May 2018 (Day 4)
Lots 1832 - 2472
Saturday 26th May 2018 (Day 5)
Lots 2473 - 3109
Sunday 27th May 2018 (Day 6)
Lots 3110 - 3217
Lots 3300 - 3903

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Tuesday 22nd May 2018 to Sunday 27 May 2018: Ancient Art, Antiquities & Coins

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