An Egyptian Bronze Situla, Early Ptolemaic Period, ca. 4th - 3rd century BCE
Cast using the lost wax method, this fine, tapering vessel features a rolled rim, and rounded bottom with knobbed base. It is decorated in raised relief, the wide central register with a dedicant holding a lotus flower staff next to an offering altar, making offerings to the three deities, Isis with cow-horn crown, Nephthys, and Amun-Ra, each holding the life sign ankh in their right hand and a was scepter in their left, the lower register with reoccurring lotus flowers; recurrent in Egyptian descriptions of the birth of the universe.
Background: A situla was a sacred vessel used for religious ceremonies, the situla is a very small round-bottomed bucket or pail, usually cast from bronze and decorated with mythological motifs. During the Ptolemaic and Roman periods, the situla was carried by the priests of Isis and used in rituals and processions. The situla held holy water from the Nile or milk as a symbol of Isis in her form as a mother goddess.
Dimensions: Height: 6 inches (15.1 cm)
Condition: Three small holes on one side of the situla that do not detract from the relief, otherwise in overall good condition. Custom mounted.
Provenace: Patrick Campbell, Ancient Magic, Antiquities Dealers Association accredited member. Accompanied by a letter from Dr. Stephen G.J. Quirke, Curator in the Department of Egyptian Antiquities, The British Museum, dated 1993.
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