Photo © President and Fellows of Harvard College
Identification and Creation
Object Number
1922.103
Title
Fragment with Relief Decoration
Classification
Sculpture
Work Type
sculpture
Date
n.d.
Places
Creation Place: Unidentified Region
Culture
Unidentified culture
Persistent Link
https://hvrd.art/o/304030
Physical Descriptions
Medium
Brass
Technique
Cast, lost-wax process
Dimensions
11.2 x 8 cm, 0.3 cm (4 7/16 x 3 1/8 in., 1/8 in.)
Technical Details

Chemical Composition: ICP-MS/AAA data from sample, Brass:
Cu, 69.86; Sn, 0.49; Pb, 1.38; Zn, 28.01; Fe, 0.19; Ni, 0.03; Ag, 0.04; Sb, less than 0.02; As, less than 0.10; Bi, less than 0.025; Co, less than 0.005; Au, less than 0.01; Cd, 0.006

J. Riederer

Technical Observations: The patina is a superficial black, red, brown, and green. The object is intact, although there are some casting flaws.

The plate with the figural scene seems to have been twisted at its join to the thin curved section, but the twisted deformation appears to have been cast, which would indicate that this object might be a cast replica of an ancient copper alloy object. No interstitial corrosion that would indicate burial is apparent. The casting flaws, lack of surface detail, and patina also suggest this may be a replica.


Carol Snow (submitted 2002)

Provenance
Henry W. Haynes, bequest; to the Department of the Classics, Harvard University, transfer; to the Fogg Art Museum, 1922.
Acquisition and Rights
Credit Line
Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Transfer from the Department of the Classics, Harvard University, Bequest of Henry W. Haynes, 1912
Accession Year
1922
Object Number
1922.103
Division
Asian and Mediterranean Art
Contact
am_asianmediterranean@harvard.edu
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Descriptions

Published Catalogue Text: Ancient Mediterranean and Near Eastern Bronzes at the Harvard Art Museums
This enigmatic object consists of a bulb-shaped plate, slightly convex on the front, concave on the back, and attached to a thin arching section by means of a transverse bar. A rectangular hole pierces the transverse bar and plate.

The front of the plate and curving section are covered by extensive relief decoration that is unfortunately difficult to interpret. The plate has a raised rim around the edge, which is interrupted by the transverse bar. In the area above the bar is a Phrygian cap with horizontal rays or perhaps a half-shell behind it. The lower section has a man, seated with his legs to the left, head frontal, torso in three quarter view. He wears a cloak, clasped over the right shoulder, that leaves his torso bare; there is also some drapery across his left hip. On his head, he has perhaps a laurel crown or a turban. The facial features are worn and indistinct, but some musculature is clear on the arms, torso, and legs. He rests his left hand on a shield with a circular boss or a large patera on the ground. His right arm is upraised grasping a sword, staff, or standard. There are four other standard-like objects to the left of the figure and one to the right. Also to the right are what appear to be banners or sails. He may be sitting on a pile of arms. The thin curved section is pointed at the top, expanding and then tapering down to the transverse bar, where it ends in a slightly curving projection. It is decorated with vegetal patterns, including flowers, leaves, and berries on either side of an oval with a central four-petaled rosette. There is some additional decoration (of indeterminate pattern) on either end.

The transverse bar has a simple raised border at the top and bottom; it expands toward the center and then narrows. The flat end is decorated by a raised leaf or feather. The object is smooth and featureless on the back, except for the slight twist in the transverse bar at the point where it attaches to the thin curving section.

Lisa M. Anderson

Subjects and Contexts

Ancient Bronzes

This record has been reviewed by the curatorial staff but may be incomplete. Our records are frequently revised and enhanced. For more information please contact the Division of Asian and Mediterranean Art at am_asianmediterranean@harvard.edu