- Identification and Creation
- Object Number
- Knife Blade
- Tools and Equipment
- Work Type
- Creation Place: Ancient & Byzantine World
- Unidentified culture
- Persistent Link
- Physical Descriptions
- Cast and hammered
- 4.4 x 0.4 x 23.5 cm (1 3/4 x 3/16 x 9 1/4 in.)
- Technical Details
Chemical Composition: XRF data from Tracer
Alloying Elements: copper, tin
Other Elements: lead, iron, arsenic
K. Eremin, January 2014
Technical Observations: The patina has been stripped down to a brown and black metallic surface with some pale green corrosion. The surface is etched and pitted. The blade has suffered some loss to the cutting edge, where there are several stress cracks.
The knife blade was made by casting and hot working. Under the microscope, dendrites from casting show deformation from hammering. The three holes for attachment to a handle were made by punching and turning in order to receive a rivet-type mechanical attachment that is no longer present.
Carol Snow (submitted 2002)
- Acquisition and Rights
- Credit Line
- Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Transfer from the Department of the Classics, Harvard University
- Accession Year
- Object Number
- Asian and Mediterranean Art
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Published Catalogue Text: Ancient Mediterranean and Near Eastern Bronzes at the Harvard Art Museums
This thin, single-edged knife has a tang with three circular holes for attachment to a handle (1). The tang is aligned with the non-cutting edge and indented sharply from the edge; the blade tapers to a point at the tip. The non-cutting edge is thickened (3.5 mm thick compared to 0.5 mm thick at the cutting edge). An old sticker is preserved on one side of the blade and reads “1998.” A second, paper label reading “67” is attached to the end of the tang.
1. Compare a copper alloy knife with one edge from Pompeii of a slightly different shape in Piccoli bronzi del Real museo borbonico (Naples, 1858) pl. 4.34; and an iron knife in R. Steiger et al., Forschungen in Augst 1: Insula 31, Ausgrabungen und Funde 1960/61 (Augst, 1977) 223, fig. 96.4.
Lisa M. Anderson
- Subjects and Contexts
- Related Works
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