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Lot 132, Auction 5/30/2017: Rare Parthian Glazed Terracotta Fragment - Bull Form

Near East, northeastern Iran, Parthia, ca. 3rd to 1st century BCE. A pottery fragment from a bull form vessel. The bull has prominent, applied bulging eyes and two large, erect horns, emphasizing the virility that the bull symbolized. A wide spout rises from behind the horns; the body has been glazed a coppery green blue. Similar intact vessels have a waisted globular body and two spouts emerging from the front of the body. The glaze remaining on this example is particularly rare. Parthian art employed motifs from Hellenistic culture and from the Near East, and sadly much of the art made at the center of the Parthian world has been lost to time. Animal-form ceramic drinking vessels vary greatly in style and form across the Parthian Empire, with rams, ducks, stags, and bulls like this one being the most common and symbolically significant. Comes with custom stand. Size: 6" L x 3.25" W x 5" H (15.2 cm x 8.3 cm x 12.7 cm); height on stand: 7.7" (19.6 cm)

Condition: Piece is a repaired fragment; one horn has been restored. Glaze with a great deal of craquelure remains around the lower part of the body.

Provenance: private New Jersey, USA collection, acquired over twenty years ago

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