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Parthian Silver Dagger Handle - Human Figure - 57.2 g

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Dimension: H 29.5 cm, Weight: 7350 g
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Lot 0060 Details

Description
Near East, Parthia, ca. 3rd to 1st century BCE. A handsome, heavy, 77% silver dagger handle in the form of a standing human figure. The figure wears a long garment with a heavy hem and stands with hands over his stomach. He also has a large beard and elaborate coiffure. A tab at the base would have slotted into an iron blade that has been lost to time. Size: 0.9" W x 3.4" H (2.3 cm x 8.6 cm); 4" H (10.2 cm) on included custom stand; total weight: 57.2 grams

This hilt was probably for an acinaces, a blade that was usually 14 to 18 inches long, most famously associated with the Persians, who also gave us the word for this type of dagger. Like many things from the 1st millennium BCE, we associate them with the Persians because Classical authors noted their use (and the word continued to be used into the medieval period by authors in Latin to describe any weapon used by the Persians, including the scimitar). In reality, acinaces, whatever they were called by the local population, were used throughout a vast swath of territory encompassing the eastern Mediterranean, the Near East and central Asia, by such diverse cultures as the Parthians, the Medes, the Greeks, and the Scythians.

Provenance: private California, USA collection, bought at Gorny & Mosch, Munich, Germany around 25 years ago

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#145992
Condition
Wear to surface commensurate with age and handling, but form is still clear as are some details. Patina on surface, especially in the lower profile areas.
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Parthian Silver Dagger Handle - Human Figure - 57.2 g

Estimate $4,000 - $6,000Jul 16, 2020
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