Chemical Composition: XRF data from Artax 1 and Tracer
Alloying Elements: copper, tin
Other Elements: iron
K. Eremin, January 2014
Technical Observations: The surface details are rather worn. There are numerous cracks and creases throughout the piece, and the top and bottom edges of the fragment are jagged. The patina is a light oxidized brown that is visible through a worn, thin greenish-tan layer.
This object is a fragment of a longer strip of metal that was formed from a very thin, hammered sheet of copper alloy. The left edge is folded back and preserves three different types of holes for attachment: a smaller hole at the level of Herakles’ shins; a larger one at the height of the chimera’s heads, and a double hole with the remains of two small rivets or nails near the bottom of the fragment. All of these, as well as another larger hole in the central, horizontal decorative band of the fragment, were punched through from the front.
The clearly defined tool marks on the back, as well as the quality of the abstracted forms of the decorative elements on the front, suggest that the latter were created by repoussé. Punches served to push the metal into a mold in the shape of the pattern that was to be produced on the front.
Francesca G. Bewer (submitted 2012)