Found at Fort Shalmaneser, Nimrud (ancient Kalhu), northern Iraq
Clear Egyptian connections
Fort Shalmaneser consisted of a palace, storerooms and arsenal for the Assyrian army. This openwork ivory plaque may originally have been part of a piece of furniture which came to Nimrud, the Assyrian capital, as part of tribute or booty. When Nimrud was plundered at the end of the seventh century BC objects such as furniture were broken up for their inlaid precious stones and metals.
The sphinx shows clear Egyptian influence since he wears the Upper and Lower crown of Egypt and hanging from his chest is an apron with a projecting uraeus (rearing cobra) worn by Egyptian pharaohs. The style shows that the ivory was probably carved by a Phoenician craftsman on the coast of the Levant. It is similar to the falcon-headed sphinxes, which wear the double crown and uraeus, on a bronze bowl also from Nimrud.
D. Collon, Ancient Near Eastern art (London, The British Museum Press, 1995)
J.E. Curtis and J.E. Reade (eds), Art and empire: treasures from (London, The British Museum Press, 1995)
Donate and help us!
We're a non-profit organisation and we need your help! This website costs money and research material isn't cheap either. We are supported only by our donors. Please consider donating; even small amounts help. Thank you!
Are you qualified to peer review ancient history information? Apply now and help provide quality ancient history information on the web!
- No references have been submitted for this image.
You might also find the following pages interesting...