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Roman Bronze Chariot Rein Guides - Cobras (pr)

$8,495.00
Roman, Imperial Period, ca. 2nd to 4th century CE. A pair of gorgeous cast-bronze chariot fittings, each with a large, round socket, and symmetrical arms that branch outward, resembling the heads of serpents - Egyptian cobras, also known as asps. Each socket is capped by a finial, and pierced through near its lower end for attachment. The bodies of the snakes are scored to give the impression of snakeskin. Size of each: 6.55" W x 4.8" H (16.6 cm x 12.2 cm)

Roman chariots were not used for warfare, but instead in circuses and in triumphal processions. As a result, elaborate attachments like this became de rigeur, lending a unique look to each chariot, where they were mounted on posts above each wheel. The carriage was supported by leather straps wrapped around the shaft and guided by the projecting arms. This absorbed the vibrations of the wooden wheels, making the ride smoother. Imagine the sun flashing off of the dark, polished bronze that this would have had when made!

Condition: Both are intact, with pretty, mottled, pale green patinas and much detail remaining.

Provenance: private East Coast, USA collection

All items legal to buy/sell under U.S. Statute covering cultural patrimony Code 2600, CHAPTER 14, and are guaranteed to be as described or your money back.

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