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Identification and Creation

Object Number
Arch Fibula
Work Type
pin, fibula
7th century BCE
Creation Place: Ancient & Byzantine World, Europe
Orientalizing period
Persistent Link

Physical Descriptions

Cast and hammered
3.8 x 5.1 x 0.5 cm (1 1/2 x 2 x 3/16 in.)
Technical Details

Chemical Composition: XRF data from Artax 1
Alloy: Bronze
Alloying Elements: copper, tin
Other Elements: lead, iron, arsenic
K. Eremin, January 2014

Technical Observations: The patina is a raised green and blue with small areas of a darker, perfectly preserved surface. Some brown accretions are present. The overall condition is good.

The tapered ends and flat catchplate were hammered from a rod of bronze. The preserved areas of the surface exhibit longitudinal facets and chatter marks from finishing the surface with a scraping tool. Lines from the abrasive finishing of its surface are visible on the catchplate.

Henry Lie (submitted 2012)

Acquisition and Rights

Credit Line
Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Gift of Herbert D. Hoffmann
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
The bow-shaped fibula has two looped springs, one at each end. One is placed before the triangular catchplate. The other is positioned between the arched body and straight pin, which is held in the folded bottom edge of the catchplate. The type has a wide distribution in the Balkans and is found in Greece, although in fewer numbers (1).


1. See Chr. Blinkenberg, Lindiaka 5: Fibules grecques et orientales, Historisk-filologiske meddelelser 13.1 (Copenhagen, 1926) type III 4a; J. Bouzek, Graeco-Macedonian Bronzes (Prague, 1974) 132-33; D. Gergova, Früh- und ältereisenzeitlische Fibeln in Bulgarien, Prähistorische Bronzefunde 14.7 (Munich, 1987) 41-43, type B1, 2 (variant delta); and S. Langdon, “Jewelry Group,” in From Pasture to Polis: Art in the Age of Homer, exh. cat., Museum of Art and Archaeology, University of Missouri-Columbia; University Art Museum, University of California, Berkeley; Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Harvard University Art Museums, ed. S. Langdon (Columbia, MO, 1993) 109-11, no. 30.

Michael Bennett

Subjects and Contexts

  • Ancient Bronzes

Verification Level

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