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Author Topic: New Gallery: Bronze Weaponry of Western Asia  (Read 4898 times)

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Offline Robert L3

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Re: New Gallery: Bronze Weaponry of Western Asia
« Reply #25 on: November 08, 2020, 12:13:01 pm »
Thanks, Joe.

Offline Robert L3

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Re: New Gallery: Bronze Weaponry of Western Asia
« Reply #26 on: January 06, 2021, 11:52:35 pm »
Here’s another update:

Recently picked up a decent sized lot of ancient Iranian arrowheads, which I documented and uploaded to the gallery. I’m not providing direct links to those here, but they represent AE Arrowhead #’s 19 – 27.

I do, however, want to provide links to two pickups that I find particularly interesting.

The first is what appears, at first glance, to be a Luristani dagger hilt with double-eared pommel. However, with about half the blade remaining, it measures only 2 ¾”. I would imagine that, with blade fully intact, it would have measured about 3 1/4".

It was, then, an imitation of a Luristani dagger, but in a reduced scale. Such miniature “daggers” are very rare. I've only seen two for sale since I started collecting the weaponry a couple years back. (This being one of the two)

My specimen is listed as “AE Hilt #3” in my gallery:
https://www.forumancientcoins.com/gallery/displayimage.php?pos=-167295
Enlargement:
https://www.forumancientcoins.com/gallery/albums/userpics/16274/Hilt_3.jpg

Such small imitative daggers are described by Houshang Mahboubian as surgical instruments. Whether or not that is a reasonable speculation, I don't know. Mahboubian, who possesses what has been described as "one of the most magnificent collections of early Iranian bronzes in the world," illustrates a number of them in his book Art of Ancient Iran: Copper and Bronze. I am providing the relevant illustration from his book below.

However, such tiny weapons are described elsewhere (in the listing of one on the market a while back) as having had a probable “votive or ceremonial function.” And, I suppose the votive interpretation probably makes more sense to me than the surgical instrument theory. As you can see, in the upper part of my image from Mahboubian’s book, the ancient Iranians had a number of surgical instruments which, it seems, were designed exclusively based on their function. One might rightly wonder, then, why some surgical instruments looked the part – like instruments of surgery – while others would replicate daggers.

The other item I want to provide a link to is a socketed spearhead that I uploaded this evening. Described in the seller’s listing as being from Luristan, it is a reasonable match for one illustrated in Ezat O. Negahban’s Weapons from Marlik – specifically, Plate X, figure 130. (As mentioned in my initial essay at the top of this thread, “Luristan” is used pretty liberally for Late Bronze/Early Iron Age weaponry from Iran and nearby southern Caspian Sea locations) I provide a pic from Negahban’s book below, as well.

AE Spearhead #20:
https://www.forumancientcoins.com/gallery/displayimage.php?pos=-167482
Enlargement:
https://www.forumancientcoins.com/gallery/albums/userpics/16274/AE_Spearhead_20.jpg






Online Virgil H

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Re: New Gallery: Bronze Weaponry of Western Asia
« Reply #27 on: January 07, 2021, 02:04:38 am »
This is an incredible collection. A few of those in the lower photo look like Zulu assegai spear heads of much more recent make. Just a comment on what you said about surgical instruments. The top photo certainly shows multiple instruments that have to have specialized uses. Certainly, surgery or medical would be within the realm of possibility. Some of those certainly don't look like weapons. Even the daggers could be surgical. Even though the Persians were extremely advanced, medical knowledge was lacking and pretty crude, as it was everywhere. Even up to modern times, saws were and are a part of medical surgical kits, especially in the military. My comment probably isn't helpful, but that collection of yours rocks. Thanks for sharing it.

Offline Robert L3

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Re: New Gallery: Bronze Weaponry of Western Asia
« Reply #28 on: January 07, 2021, 09:04:20 am »
Thanks for the comments, Virgil. Much appreciated.

Online Virgil H

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Re: New Gallery: Bronze Weaponry of Western Asia
« Reply #29 on: January 07, 2021, 10:52:29 pm »
Just realized I may have implied your spear points weren't real. I didn't mean that at all. Sorry for that confusion. I have three Zulu assegais, two of which are authentic and one is probably a tourist type device, although I still wouldn't want to be stabbed with it. And mine aren't really antiques, the two are less than 100 years old. I just meant the points look similar.
Virgil

Offline otlichnik

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Re: New Gallery: Bronze Weaponry of Western Asia
« Reply #30 on: January 08, 2021, 05:44:14 pm »
Nice stuff Robert.  I entirely share your views in the small object.  It really seems that votive use is more likely than medical instrument based on form.  I have not googled "Luristan votive" but I assume it is a thing....

Though Mahboubian's is a great collection, that doesn't mean that the descriptions are up to date and accurate.

There was a great fad for "medical implements", in collection reports and catalogues, and in fact still is. 

So many Roman objects labelled "medical instruments" are items that may have had that use, but also had many other uses - many more common uses like cosmetics, kitchen, etc.  Logic tells us that for every Roman doctor there were literally thousands of Roman ladies - and thus thousands of cosmetic scoops for every medical probe.

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(Shawn Caza, Ottawa)

Offline Robert L3

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Re: New Gallery: Bronze Weaponry of Western Asia
« Reply #31 on: January 09, 2021, 10:49:40 am »
Virgil, no worries. I understood the point you were making.

Shawn, great insights as usual. Thanks for the comments.

Offline Robert L3

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Re: New Gallery: Bronze Weaponry of Western Asia
« Reply #32 on: February 12, 2021, 07:07:29 pm »
In my second post in this thread, I devoted a paragraph to “Looking Ahead.” It was written in summer of 2019, as I was embarking on this new and challenging collecting area. In that paragraph, I expressed my hope to eventually snag (1) “a reasonably affordable dagger with a penannular (crescent-shaped) guard…,” (2) one or more specimens from “the well-known John Piscopo Collection,” and (3) “socketed (as opposed to tanged) spearheads.”

Since posting that, I've added two socketed spearheads to my collection and gallery. So that knocked off one of the aforementioned items from the “Looking Ahead” list.

Today I add a blade from the Piscopo Collection:
https://www.forumancientcoins.com/gallery/displayimage.php?pos=-168248
Enlargement: https://www.forumancientcoins.com/gallery/albums/userpics/16274/AE_Dagger_7.jpg

From a visual standpoint, there’s nothing particularly spectacular about it, although it does represent a type I did not previously own. Its importance is in its provenance. I had earlier opportunities to pick up some relatively affordable ex-Piscopo pieces, but they exhibited signs of bronze disease, which I try to avoid when possible.

I also added my fourth spear butt today:
https://www.forumancientcoins.com/gallery/displayimage.php?pos=-168247
Enlargement: https://www.forumancientcoins.com/gallery/albums/userpics/16274/AE_Spear_Butt_Counterpoise_4.jpg

Hopefully there is a “penannular guard” dagger in my future, but I expect it’ll be a long time coming…

Offline quadrans

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Re: New Gallery: Bronze Weaponry of Western Asia
« Reply #33 on: February 12, 2021, 09:25:50 pm »
Again so many nice additions, Bob,  👍

Congratulations

I always enjoy it

Joe/Q.
All the Best :), Joe
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Offline Robert L3

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Re: New Gallery: Bronze Weaponry of Western Asia
« Reply #34 on: February 13, 2021, 11:06:42 am »
Thanks, Q.

Offline otlichnik

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Re: New Gallery: Bronze Weaponry of Western Asia
« Reply #35 on: February 13, 2021, 05:58:37 pm »
I really can't find a less weird way to say - nice butt.

But it is a nice addition to your collection.  Very interesting with the dots on it.

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(Shawn Caza, Ottawa)

Offline Robert L3

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Re: New Gallery: Bronze Weaponry of Western Asia
« Reply #36 on: February 13, 2021, 06:51:35 pm »
Thanks, Shawn.

Offline Robert L3

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Re: New Gallery: Bronze Weaponry of Western Asia
« Reply #37 on: June 09, 2021, 10:55:17 pm »
The most recent addition to the gallery is AE Dagger #09. It is in poor shape, needing conservation. But it is such an interesting and rare type. I'm happy to have it join the collection. As I state in its description in the gallery, the lower portion of hilt was cast in imitation of an inlaid flanged hilt, complete with guard flanges. (See the hourglass-shaped part of the hilt - compare it, for example to the actual flanges/tabs on the hilt of AE Dagger #04) In addition, the pommel is divided into two semicircular "ears." I've photographed the dagger from different angles, to give a sense of how those "ears" splay outward when seen from the side view.

https://www.forumancientcoins.com/gallery/displayimage.php?pid=170527
Enlargement at:
https://www.forumancientcoins.com/gallery/displayimage.php?pid=170527&fullsize=1

Offline otlichnik

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Re: New Gallery: Bronze Weaponry of Western Asia
« Reply #38 on: June 10, 2021, 08:02:09 am »
A classic Luristan type.  I always thought these were really cool.

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(Shawn Caza, Ottawa)

Offline quadrans

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Re: New Gallery: Bronze Weaponry of Western Asia
« Reply #39 on: June 12, 2021, 10:53:22 am »
Hi, Bob.

 I always enjoyed your new additions... +++

 Joe/Q.
All the Best :), Joe
https://www.forumancientcoins.com/gallery/index.php?cat=31252

Offline Robert L3

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Re: New Gallery: Bronze Weaponry of Western Asia
« Reply #40 on: June 12, 2021, 11:06:22 am »
Thanks, Joe.

 

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