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Home > Auctions > 7th September 2021 > 'The Axel Guttmann' Apulo-Corinthian Helmet

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LOT 0376

GBP (£) 18,000 - 24,000
EUR (€) 21,150 - 28,210
USD ($) 25,080 - 33,450

Opening Bid
£18,000 (EUR 21,154; USD 25,084) (+bp*)

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Bid History: 0

'The Axel Guttmann' Apulo-Corinthian Helmet

6th-4th century BC

A Magno-Graecian or Etrusco-Italic bronze helmet of Type B with an offset bowl, double-profiled eyebrow ornaments and small eye cut-outs flanking a slightly protruding nose-guard; the cheek-pieces connected by bridges; part of the central crest holder in situ, flanked by two side attachments for the crest side plumes; side holes for attaching the chin-strap, broad neck-guard with central eyelet loop; the cheek-pieces decorated with boars and the facial area and edges decorated with ribbons of herringbone ornament, the neck-guard with an eagle motif. 1.08 kg, 30cm (11 3/4"). Fine condition, some restoration.

Private collection, London, UK; acquired from Baidun Gallery, Jerusalem, Israel; previously in the private collection of Andrew Spangler, Texas, USA on 17 February 2015; formerly with Hermann Historica, Germany, 7 October 2009, lot 190; before that in the Axel Guttmann (1944-2001) collection, without inventory number; acquired from a private collection, Krefeld, Germany, in 1993; accompanied by an expertise by military specialist Dr. Raffaele D'Amato; this lot has been checked against the Interpol Database of stolen works of art and is accompanied by AIAD certificate number no.10804-178693.

See Bottini, A., 'Apulisch-Korintische Helme' in Antike Helme, RGZM Monographien 14, Mainz, 1988, 107-136, type B2, Melfi-Chiuchiari, fig.34, p.131.

The Corinthian helmet was depicted on sculptures more than any other helmet; it seems that the Greeks romantically associated it with glory and the past. The Pseudo-Corinthian helmet type was developed in Italy, in Magna Graecia and Etruria, probably from the Corinthian model but with noteworthy variants. The eye-holes and nasal were decorative rather than functional, because the helmet was worn on the top of the head with the lower edge resting on the brow. It was one of the favourite helmets of the Roman legionaries from the age of the Etruscan kings until the 2nd century BC, and the presence of an eagle behind the neck of this specimen could also refer to a Roman miles as the owner of the helmet.