Coptic Textile with Mythological Figures


A large Coptic sleeve fragment featuring a brown background, coarse figures and interlacing details in green wool. The fragment presents three medallions with four flowered tendrils, each containing a little winged Erote, a bird with wings spread, possibly an eagle, and an animal facing backwards. Between the medallions figures of dancers and small quadruped animals fill the space. The composition is framed by a finely rendered floral and geometric motif. This strip was very likely part of a tunic, the most common garment in Coptic culture.

Date: Circa 3rd-4th century AD
Condition: Very Fine. This ancient fragment has clear interlacing details and has been mounted on modern fabric to better preserve it. 


Coptic textiles, whose production began in the 3rd and 4th centuries AD in Egypt, were hand woven with unbleached linen warps and dyed wool wefts. This beautiful Coptic textile managed to survive thanks to the dry and hot desert climate. During the Early Coptic period (3rd – 4th centuries AD), the primary decorative themes were taken from nature and Classical mythology. By the Middle Coptic period (5th – 7th centuries AD), depictions included abstract natural elements and Christian symbolism.

Weight 54 g
Dimensions L 52 x W 10.5 cm




Greek Mythology

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