Luristan Bronze Ceremonial Macehead

£ 425.00

A Luristan ceremonial cast bronze macehead of tubular shape. The mace is decorated towards the top with a vertical register of lozenge protrusions, separated from the rest of the shaft by sets of ridges, horizontally grooved. The macehead is mounted on a purpose-made wooden stand.

Date: Circa 1200 - 900 BC
Condition: Complete with encrustations, a small dent towards base, good stable bronze with patches of olive-green patination.

In stock

SKU: AS-3546 Category: Tag:

The Luristan empire developed sophisticated and prolific metal-working technology from the third millennium BC. With manufacture not suffering decline until the seventh century BC, over this extensive period metalworkers were essential for supplying and arming both local wealthy patrons and the warring factions of the day.

A macehead may have been mounted on a shaft as a symbol of rank, perhaps a derivative from a weapon of similar form. Throughout the ancient world, maceheads varied significantly, and we know of a great number with different styles and decorations. Several important examples were shaped by the local metalworkers in Luristan and Gilan from the third millennium BC. These mace heads may not only have served a purpose in warfare, but also in religious contexts – perhaps being associated with piety in Luristan. Indeed, maceheads played an important role as votive offerings in shrines across Mesopotamia.

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

Weight 410 g
Dimensions H 17 cm



Reference: For details of maces, see pp 90-97; Catalogue of the Ancient Persian Bronzes in the Ashmolean Museum by P.R.S. Moorey; Oxford University Press 1971.

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