NOW SOLD A Beautiful Ancient Bronze Age Long Sword Circa 1200 to 800 BC
The late bronze age early Luristan culture was renowned for their bronze workmanship and this cast bronze sword is an excellent illustration of their skill. Cast using the lost wax process, this sword is a rare example of the double ear pommel type found in the great museums of the world.
This well-balanced and mighty weapon, is around the same proportions of the much later Roman gladius. It features a slender square hilt that joins to a pommel that divides at right angles to the blade into two finely decorated semi-circular "ears". The pommel features with a semi-circular opening in the centre of each ear. A rectangular guard carefully designed that extends down to firmly grip the upper end of the double-edged blade.
The wide graduated blade that tapers regularly to a point and it has, low, twin central midribs that taper regularly with almost straight cutting edge to a point, making it most suitable for thrusting and cutting.
It is the austere perfection of line and proportion that makes this weapon so beautiful. For reference see: Moorey P.R.S. "Catalogue of Ancient Persian Bronzes in the Ashmolean Museum" (1971), pg. 80 fig 63, Mahboubian, H. "Art of Ancient Iran" pg 304 386(a) & (b) and pg 314-315 397a-I, Moorey PRS "Ancient Persian Bronzes in the Adam Collection" pg 58 28 and Muscarella "Bronze and Iron, Ancient Near Eastern Artifacts in the Metropolitan Museum of Art" pgs 282-285 385-390.
This type of pommel represents the north-western Persian version of weapons evolved from Elamite or Mesopotamian flange-hilted blades. They are found made throughout the northern regions of Persia in both bronze and iron, and sometimes with a combination of bronze hilt and iron blade. Items such as this were oft acquired in the 18th century by British noblemen touring Northern France and Italy on their Grand Tour. Originally placed on display in the family 'cabinet of curiosities', within his country house upon his return home. A popular pastime in the 18th and 19th century, comprised of English ladies and gentlemen traveling for many months, or even years, througout classical Europe, and Middle East, acquiring antiquities and antiques for their private collections. This is a most handsome ancient bronze weapon from the era of the so called Trojan Wars. The ancient Greeks believed the Trojan War was a historical event that had taken place in the 13th or 12th century BC, and believed that Troy was located in modern day Turkey near the Dardanelles. In Greek mythology, the Trojan War was waged against the city of Troy by the Achaeans (Greeks) after Paris of Troy took Helen from her husband Menelaus, the king of Sparta. The war is among the most important events in Greek mythology and was narrated in many works of Greek literature, including Homer's Iliad and the Odyssey . "The Iliad" relates a part of the last year of the siege of Troy, while the Odyssey describes the journey home of Odysseus, one of the Achaean leaders. Other parts of the war were told in a cycle of epic poems, which has only survived in fragments. Episodes from the war provided material for Greek tragedy and other works of Greek literature, and for Roman poets such as Virgil and Ovid.
The war originated from a quarrel between the goddesses Athena, Hera, and Aphrodite, after Eris, the goddess of strife and discord, gave them a golden apple, sometimes known as the Apple of Discord, marked "for the fairest". Zeus sent the goddesses to Paris, who judged that Aphrodite, as the "fairest", should receive the apple. In exchange, Aphrodite made Helen, the most beautiful of all women and wife of Menelaus, fall in love with Paris, who took her to Troy. Agamemnon, king of Mycenae and the brother of Helen's husband Menelaus, led an expedition of Achaean troops to Troy and besieged the city for ten years due to Paris' insult. After the deaths of many heroes, including the Achaeans Achilles and Ajax, and the Trojans Hector and Paris, the city fell to the ruse of the Trojan Horse. The Achaeans slaughtered the Trojans (except for some of the women and children whom they kept or sold as slaves) and desecrated the temples, thus earning the gods' wrath. Few of the Achaeans returned safely to their homes and many founded colonies in distant shores. The Romans later traced their origin to Aeneas, one of the Trojans, who was said to have led the surviving Trojans to modern day Italy. Made in copper bronze in the Western Asiatic region. Western Asiatic bronzes refer to items dating from roughly 1200-800 BC that have been excavated since the late 1920's in the Harsin, Khorramabad and Alishtar valleys of the Zagros Mountains especially at the site of Tepe Sialk. Scholars believe they were created by either the Cimmerians or by such related Indo-European peoples as the early Medes and Persians. Weapons from this region were highly sought after by warriors of many cultures because of their quality, balance and durability. Weighs 1,6 kilos, 79 cms long