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The Lydian Treasure



Total length 5.5 cm.
depth of bowl 6.8 cm.
diameter at rim 12.8 cm.
weight 325.8 gr.

Usak Museum

of bowl 6.8 cm.; diameter at rim 12.8 cm.; The strainer has a hemispherical bowl and a broad concave rim. The handle projects at a slight angle. Below a plain zone the bowl is perforated in a swirling pattern; twenty one perforated arcs, curving anti-clockwise, radiate from the centre on the floor of the bowl, and are surrounded by an upper zone of sixty one arcs which swirl in the opposite direction. The stem of the handle is broad and flat, narrowing slightly at the mid-way point. Along the length of its upper face two narrow ridges run from the edges at the inner end and converge towards the outer end. Where the handle meets the bowl it is decorated across its width by a moulding of alternately broad and narrow ridges. Riveted to the outside of the bowl is a palmette, with details chased and engraved. At the opposite end of the handle tapers sharply and curves round in an upturned hook of round section which terminates in a duck's head. The duck's plumage is incised and there is a narrow collar around its neck. The bowl of the strainer is hammered, the handle cast. There are corrosion holes in the bowl and the rim.

Two broadly similar silver strainers are in the British Museum (WA 118462,117840), one is in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York (1973.11.7), and there is a bronze example from Nimrud, all of the Achaemenid period. Besides their use in Near Eastern wine services, strainers were also used in Greece and feature in Attic red figure symposium scenes.

Duck head terminals also appear on the silver spoon and bronze handle. Duck head lugs are a feature of the alabastra and the incense burner.


This site prepared by Tayfun Kalyoncu on 28.02.1997 and last updated on 01.05.1999.
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