Scythian Gold Zoomorphic Appliqué


A sheet gold mount with repoussé design of a bird. It has spread wings, segmented tail, and visible hatching upon the body. There are three attachment loops to the reverse.

Date: 6th Century BC
Period: Late Archaic - Early Classical Period
Provenance: Property of an important Mayfair gentleman, acquired 1980.
Condition: Excellent condition.


Scythia was an area in central Eurasia, bordering the Black Sea and consisting largely of nomadic tribes. Scythian art was primarily decorative in its nature, and the Scythians were famed for their jewellery, which was highly ornate and carefully crafted.

This gold zoomorphic mount would have been affixed to garments of clothing as decoration. Such items normally would have been affixed in patterns, with multiple gold mounts on a single item of clothing. Gold was so integral to Scythian fashions that even their horses were richly decorated in gold ornamentation. The reverse of this piece clearly shows the three suspension holes by which it would have been attached to a garment.

To discover more about Scythian culture, please visit our relevant blog post: Scythian Gold.

Weight 0.89 g
Dimensions H 2.2 cm




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