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Identification and Creation

Object Number
Pin Head in two parts
Work Type
10th-8th century BCE
Creation Place: Ancient & Byzantine World, Asia, Luristan (Iran)
Find Spot: Middle East, Iran, Western Iran
Iron Age
Near Eastern
Persistent Link

Physical Descriptions

Cast, lost-wax process
Fragment: 8.3 x 4.2 cm (3 1/4 x 1 5/8 in.)
Assembled: 8.3 x 7 x 0.8 cm (3 1/4 x 2 3/4 x 5/16 in.)
Technical Details

Chemical Composition: XRF data from Artax 1
Alloy: Bronze
Alloying Elements: copper, tin
Other Elements: lead, iron, nickel
Comments: The Artax detected the same elements in 139.1972.A and 139.1972.B.

XRF data from Tracer
Alloy: Bronze
Alloying Elements: copper, tin
Other Elements: lead, iron, silver
Comments: The Tracer detected the same elements 139.1972.A and 139.1972.B.

K. Eremin, January 2014

Technical Observations: The patina is green with spots of red and brown burial accretions. The object has broken into two fragments, and there is a modern brass repair pin.

The object was cast, probably by the lost-wax process. The wax model was made in an open mold to form the front of the main decorative section. The thicker tubular sections were then added to the bottom of the finial in the wax model. The tubular section is a metal cast continuous with the decorative section, but it projects above the decorative section on the reverse. This indicates that the bronze could not have been cast in an open mold; rather, it must have been cast after investing the wax model. The iron corrosion products on the tubular section are the remains of the iron pin in the tube. There is some roughness and porosity on the reverse of the top of the finial from the metal casting process. Incised lines on the front edge were abrasively cut into the metal after casting.

Henry Lie (submitted 2011)


Recorded Ownership History
Kurt H. Weil, Montclair, NJ (1927-1992), by descent; to Kathleen Weil-Garris Brandt, New York (1992-2023), gift; to the Harvard Art Museums.

Acquisition and Rights

Credit Line
Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Gift of Professor Kathleen Weil-Garris Brandt
Accession Year
Object Number
Asian and Mediterranean Art

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Subjects and Contexts

  • Ancient Bronzes

Verification Level

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