Archaic Greek Bronze Statuette of a Bull


An extremely fine Archaic Greek hollow cast bronze statuette, representing a bull. The animal is portrayed recumbent, with its legs folded beneath the body, the head slightly turned to the left, and his mouth wide open. The animal’s anatomical features have been rendered in a stylised manner, with almond-shaped and wide-open eyes, displaying Near Eastern and Eastern Greek influences. The animal’s neck features ribbed, incised bands, possibly representing the neck’s folds of flesh, or a rings collar. A piercing to the back of the animal might suggest that the piece would have either been part of a larger composition, or attached to something.

Date: Circa 8th-7th Century BC
Provenance: From a Mayfair gallery, 1986; previously with Pierre Berge & Associes, Archeologie, Paris, 2nd February 2017, lot 248.
Condition: Extremely fine, beautiful green and brown patina to the surface.


SKU: CS-326 Category: Tags: , ,

The bull, a symbol of strength and potency but also a fundamental animal for human survival, was a popular decorative motif in Ancient Greece, painted on walls or vases, carved in intaglios or cast in gold to adorn jewellery pieces. Bronze bull’s heads attachments were also used to decorated tripods, which were originally produced in Cyprus, and then exported to mainland Greece and Etruria. Bronze statuettes of bulls, would have been placed as votive offerings in temples and shrines.

Weight 192 g
Dimensions L 8 cm



Reference: For a similar item, see The Metropolitan Museum, item number 47.100.85

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