8 June 2005
A NORTHWEST IRANIAN BRONZE HORSEBIT
CIRCA 9TH-7TH CENTURY B.C.
Each openwork rectangular cheek-piece cast in the form of the "Master of the Animals," the standing bearded deity grasping the necks of two ibexes, framed by two stylized palm trees, a groundline below, a large circular perforation at the center for the thick bit, square in section with coiled ends
4 3/8 in. (11.1 cm.) high
Anonymous sale; Christie's, London, 12 November 1977, lot 53.
New York Private Collector; Christie's, New York, 18 December 1997, lot 9.
Swiss Private Collection.
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O.W. Muscarella, Bronze and Iron, Ancient Near Eastern Artifacts in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1988, p. 88.
For a single cheek-piece of similar style see no. 147 in Muscarella, op. cit. Noting the fine style, the author suggests this group does not come from Luristan, but rather, from Northwest Iran, perhaps Hasanlu.
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