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Home > Auctions > 25th February 2020 > Byzantine 'Greek Fire' Fire Bomb or Hand Grenade Group

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LOT 2480

Estimate
GBP (£) 150 - 200
EUR (€) 180 - 240
USD ($) 200 - 260

Bid History: 2   |   Current bid: £5

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Bid History: 2   |   Current bid: £5

Byzantine 'Greek Fire' Fire Bomb or Hand Grenade Group

9th-11th century AD

A group of hollow ceramic vessels each with conical body, intended to be filled with explosive liquid and a wick, and used as a hand grenade; one piriform with vertical ribs, one bulbous with impressed panels and rouletting to the shoulder, one globular with hollow filling stem. 1.7 kg total, 10.2-15cm (4 - 6"). Fine condition. [3, No Reserve]

Provenance
Property of a North West London gentleman; part of his father's collection formed during the 1980s; accompanied by an academic paper by military specialist Dr Raffaele D'Amato, date 15 July 2019 and entitled Eastern Roman Empire - Greek Fire Bomb or Hand Grenade (μεσαίον kακάβιον) 9th-11th century AD.
Literature
Cf. Arendt, W. Irene Granaten des 13-14. Jahrhunderts, die an der Wolga gefunden sind, Zeitschrift fur Historische Waffen-und Kostumkunde, 11 (1926-8), p.42; Arendt, W. Die Spharisch-konischen Gefasse aus Gebranntem Ton, ibid.; Ayalon, D. Gunpowder and Firearms in the Mamluk Kingdom, London, 1956, p.16.