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Greek Archaic Bronze Hanging Pyxis - Abstract Birds

Ancient Greece, Geometric period, ca. 8th century BCE. A lidded pyxis presenting an ever-so-slightly flattened, globular body, a pair of wonderful bird protomes at the rim - the necks adorned by incised striations, and a flared ornament at the lower end. The lid also shows bird protomes and a single vertical post/handle. This form of pyxis is called a "sickle" type, since its shape resembles that of a sickle, most likely used to hold perfumed oils or precious objects. Perforations just before the protomes of the lid and container were used to fasten the piece together in order to safeguard the contents and allow the pyxis to be suspended via the protruding central element with its double perforations. A wonderful example with a surface that presents lustrous, almost reflective areas as well as beautiful verdigris patina. Size: 2.625" W x 4.25" H (6.7 cm x 10.8 cm); 4.5" H (11.4 cm) on included custom stand.

Such pyxides have been found in necropoleis. Based upon the positioning of these pieces in the grave, experts believe that these pieces were suspended from the belts of the deceased. While two pyxides of a similar form were found at Samos, the type is believed to have originated in Macedonia.

Condition: Intact and excellent to near choice. A fine example!

Provenance: private East Coast, USA collection

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