lots of lots

Roman Lead Sarcophagus Panel w/ Gorgoneion and Dolphins

item-92260497=1
item-92260497=2
item-92260497=3
Roman Lead Sarcophagus Panel w/ Gorgoneion and Dolphins
Item Details
Description
Roman, Holy Land / Phoenicia, ca. 2nd to 4th century CE. A remarkable lead sarcophagus panel executed in relief with crossing diagonal lines of a floral motif and a top border comprised of several laurel leaves with berries arranged in a straight line, flanked above and below by a braided rope design. The striations of floral decor divide up the body of the piece by forming pediment-esque sections filled with a Gorgoneion (head of a Gorgon) on the left and a Roman amphora between two dolphins on the right. This example is replete with symbolism. The leaves refer to actual garlands and flowers used to decorate tombs and altars. The gorgoneion has apotropaic functions as guardians of tombs and were used frequently in ancient homes to avert evil from entering. Size: 13.5" W x 10.75" H (34.3 cm x 27.3 cm)

The dolphins, meanwhile, remind us of a powerful and popular motif in Roman artwork. The Romans were largely a maritime empire, and the iconography of the sea included dolphins. Romans believed these animals carried souls to the Fortunate Isles, perhaps because they could pass through the air-breathing terrestrial world and into the watery depths that claimed so many Roman sailors' lives. This symbol must have had personal significance for the deceased, who often ordered coffins to be made long before they died. Dolphins can also be a reference to the cult of Bacchus (equivalent to the Greek god Dionysus).

Prior to the 2nd century, Romans cremated their dead; around that time, they became inspired by the Greek and Etruscan practice of using sarcophagi, and they began to make coffins. This trend spread rapidly throughout the Roman Empire and between social stratums. While those of nobility would commission marble sarcophagi, the middle class would commission lead sarcophagi, such as this one. Lead sarcophagi were only made in Phoenicia, or the Eastern part of the empire, but were shipped west due to popularity.

Provenance: ex Estate of Eldert Bontekoe, Pegasi Numismatics, Ann Arbor, Michigan USA acquired before 2000

All items legal to buy/sell under U.S. Statute covering cultural patrimony Code 2600, CHAPTER 14, and are guaranteed to be as described or your money back.

A Certificate of Authenticity will accompany all winning bids.

We ship worldwide to most countries and handle all shipping in-house for your convenience.

#159572
Condition
Fragment of a larger program. Held together by bottom base. Fissure from upper left to bottom right, aperture to base, and smaller fissures at edges as shown. Expected fading to relief with nicks, chips, and scratches commensurate with age. Otherwise, very nice with rich patina and lovely earthen deposits throughout.
Buyer's Premium
  • 24.5%

Roman Lead Sarcophagus Panel w/ Gorgoneion and Dolphins

Estimate $600 - $900
Nov 05, 2020
See Sold Price
Starting Price $300
Shipping, Payment & Auction Policies
Ships from Louisville, CO, United States
Local Pick-Up Louisville, CO, United States
Artemis Gallery

Artemis Gallery

badge TOP RATED
Louisville, CO, United States
6,099 Followers
logo
www.liveauctioneers.com
item

0019: Roman Lead Sarcophagus Panel w/ Gorgoneion and Dolphins

Sold for $400
3 Bids
Est. $600 - $900Starting Price $300
Ancient & Ethnographic From Around the World
Nov 05, 2020 10:00 AM EST
Buyer's Premium 24.5%

Lot 0019 Details

Description
...
Roman, Holy Land / Phoenicia, ca. 2nd to 4th century CE. A remarkable lead sarcophagus panel executed in relief with crossing diagonal lines of a floral motif and a top border comprised of several laurel leaves with berries arranged in a straight line, flanked above and below by a braided rope design. The striations of floral decor divide up the body of the piece by forming pediment-esque sections filled with a Gorgoneion (head of a Gorgon) on the left and a Roman amphora between two dolphins on the right. This example is replete with symbolism. The leaves refer to actual garlands and flowers used to decorate tombs and altars. The gorgoneion has apotropaic functions as guardians of tombs and were used frequently in ancient homes to avert evil from entering. Size: 13.5" W x 10.75" H (34.3 cm x 27.3 cm)

The dolphins, meanwhile, remind us of a powerful and popular motif in Roman artwork. The Romans were largely a maritime empire, and the iconography of the sea included dolphins. Romans believed these animals carried souls to the Fortunate Isles, perhaps because they could pass through the air-breathing terrestrial world and into the watery depths that claimed so many Roman sailors' lives. This symbol must have had personal significance for the deceased, who often ordered coffins to be made long before they died. Dolphins can also be a reference to the cult of Bacchus (equivalent to the Greek god Dionysus).

Prior to the 2nd century, Romans cremated their dead; around that time, they became inspired by the Greek and Etruscan practice of using sarcophagi, and they began to make coffins. This trend spread rapidly throughout the Roman Empire and between social stratums. While those of nobility would commission marble sarcophagi, the middle class would commission lead sarcophagi, such as this one. Lead sarcophagi were only made in Phoenicia, or the Eastern part of the empire, but were shipped west due to popularity.

Provenance: ex Estate of Eldert Bontekoe, Pegasi Numismatics, Ann Arbor, Michigan USA acquired before 2000

All items legal to buy/sell under U.S. Statute covering cultural patrimony Code 2600, CHAPTER 14, and are guaranteed to be as described or your money back.

A Certificate of Authenticity will accompany all winning bids.

We ship worldwide to most countries and handle all shipping in-house for your convenience.

#159572
Condition
...
Fragment of a larger program. Held together by bottom base. Fissure from upper left to bottom right, aperture to base, and smaller fissures at edges as shown. Expected fading to relief with nicks, chips, and scratches commensurate with age. Otherwise, very nice with rich patina and lovely earthen deposits throughout.

Contacts

Artemis Gallery
720.890.7700
686 S. Taylor Avenue Suite 106
Louisville, CO 80027
USA
LiveAuctioneers Support
info@liveauctioneers.com
iphoneandroidPhone

Get notifications from your favorite auctioneers.

As Seen On
NBC
ABC
Today
Chicago Tribune
Architectural Digest
Shop With Confidence
Since 2002, LiveAuctioneers has made exceptional items available for safe purchase in secure online auctions.
TOP