Ancient Art International

Ancient Luristan Bronze Finial

c.1000-800 BCE
7" 1/4" (17cm) on stand
Bronze - cast in the "lost-wax process"
Excellent, Intact, with nice patina under some light encrustation
Bought by present owner at Drouot in Paris 24/6/85 from an old French collection


Composed of 3 original bronze pieces. This type is called a standard-finial. Each is unique. One such object entered the British Museum as long ago as 1854. The finial central figure of Gilgamesh, the Mesopotamian mythical hero, flanked by two snarling composite zoomorph feline heads with bird heads at their lower extremities. They are called "confronted rampant animals" by P.R.S. Moorey in his reference volume "Ancient Persian Bronzes in the Adam Collection." "Their presence in graves and shrines might be taken to indicate that they had a role akin to icons, serving as vehicles of public and private piety." A very rare example of three original matching pieces. (see p. 105 of above volume for more colorful descriptions of the source of these whimsical pieces.)
Custom Lucite stand.

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