Luristan Bronze Axe Head with Animal Head


A fine Luristan bronze axe head cast in an unusual shape. The shaft hole features collared upper and lower edges, modelled in V shapes and displaying incised grooves. An animal head is cast in high relief on the side of the shaft hole, modelled with its jaws opened and two long ridges with rounded terminals protruding from its open mouth, possibly a stylised representation of the animal’s tongue. A semi-circle shaped butt to the other side of the shaft hole.

Date: Circa 1800-600 BC
Condition: Very fine, some beautiful green patination on the surface.

In stock

SKU: CS-300 Category: Tags: ,

Luristan bronze comes from the province of Lorestan, a region situated in the area of modern South-Western Iran. In ancient times a number of nomadic populations, such as the Medes, the Kassites and eventually the Persians, settled in the area. Due to the nomadic nature of the tribes, none of the Luristan bronzes were of great size, since it was required for them to be light and portable. Their artwork mainly comprises ornaments, vessels and weapons, the majority of which have been recovered from Luristan graves. Shaft-hole axe heads, such as this fine example, were commonly used in the Akkadian and Ur III periods across Elam and Mesopotamia, regions which have been reached by Luristan nomadic tribes from the end of the 2nd millennium BC.


To discover more about the Luristan Empire, please visit our relevant blog post: The Luristan Empire: Beauty of Bronze.

Weight 290 g
Dimensions L 12.5 cm



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