This tomb painting is from the tomb of
He was a governor of Thebes in Egypt during the reigns of
and his son Amenophis II during the New Kingdom, circa 1430
This painting shows the basic techniques of the metal workers
length 16 1/4"
Available for Immediate
From the Estate of Astronaut Jim Irwin
Presented to Jim Irwin
by the Shaw of Iran
Comes with letter from Jim Irwin's widow, explaining
how the piece was awarded to Jim for his accomplishments
as an astronaut.
For a collector of antiquities this piece has a very
unique provenance associated with Middle Eastern and
When living in Sedona Arizona in the 1990's
I spent many years as an instructor for art students at
the Sedona Art Center and in my foundry. Part of the instruction
presented to students was on the history of the bronzing
process. Early in my career I had developed an interest
in the bronze age cultures which had advanced the use of
copper in art and ancient weapons and I kept a portfolio
of my studies and findings on ancient crafting in bronze
for the students to access if they had an interest.
The skills and abilities of the ancient
metallurgist and craftsman speaks volumes about the level
of trade in metals and the metallurgical abilities shown
in their individual cultures. The degree of sophistication
in use during the crafting of these artifacts should not
be underestimated. The universal application of the technology
of bronzing techniques suggests interconnectedness between
bronze age cultures.
The most highly developed archeological
site which attests to this phenomena dates to the 13 Century
BCE, "The 13th century BCE ship wreck at Uluburn",
excavated by Dr. Sam Bass and the INA at the university
of Texas. Within the context of this 13th century BCE ship
wreck was a horde of ancient weapons. The archeological
excavation of this site began in the early 1980's, therefore
it has been less than three decades since the findings relating
to this earliest of ship wrecks have been published. The
promise of other wrecks dating to the same time period revealing
more of the history of the shipping trade in ancient times
is an eminent reality for the archeological community.
The Mesopotamian fable of the "The
Epic of Gilgamesh" suggests that this universal travel
via seafaring happened as early as the 25th century BCE
at least the epic story is the first literature dedicated
to the accounts of the earliest seafaring explorers. Archeological
finds attest to seafaring ships built by the Egyptians traveling
the high seas during the construction of the earliest Pyramids.
The funerary chapel of Sahure contained illustrations of
the ships used during this period by the Egyptians and the
royal Tombs of Ur contained models of ships made of clay
from the 25th Century BCE.
This silver and gold Inlay from a Mycenean Dagger Blade
depicts a Lion hunt and displays spears, shields and slings
used in the historic period of 1600 BCE.
To paraphraze the Biblical book of Genisis
Chapter 10 1-5 the decendants of Japhteth the Son of Noah
explored the world in their ships and became the seafaring
nations. This story line is most likely a reference to the
fact that people from Mesopotamia dedicated themselves to
world exploration via seafaring.
Generally speeking the impact of seafaring
on the colonization of the planet seems to have been greatly
underestimated and the evidence for this Phemomena in prehistory
is emerging from the archeological records. Improved forensic
and dating technologies are creating new evidence that needs
additional analysis. The emerging art of underwater archeology
promises the discovery of additional (time capsules) such
as the Uluburan ship wreck, which will add information to
the historic record.
The questions remain, from
where, to where and when did the most ancient of seafarers
Details from wall panels at Mendinet Habu 12 th Century
BCE, Egypt, showing the long swords and short swords
(daggers) of the Sherek (Mycenaeans). To either side
are illustrations of the sword blades and handles from
Mycenean archeological finds. The sword and dagger illustrations
are composites created in photoshop.
Bronze Casting of Soldier found in a middle bronze age
context on Sardinia showing similar horned Helmet to
the illustrations at Mendinet Habu. This statue suggests
part of the Sea Peoples forces came from Sardinia.
In many cases, at least in Sedona, the
students were interested in the imagery of the indigenous
indian cultures and many of the techniques used by the Southwestern
Indian in crafting their Jewelry.
I taught in my classes that the same techniques
used by the ancients were applicable to modern design and
the execution of the students concepts. The history of these
techniques hopefully inspired confidence that if this art
form had been executed for over 6,000 years their individual
success at executing their personal projects was eminent.
This page is only part of
a growing portfolio of these references to the ancient bronze
arts. I hope these images spark an interest in the study of
the time and place from/or in which these implements were
Mycenaean Seal stone and its impression show a Charioteer
and spear thrower in a lightweight wicker chariot
circa 1600 BCE
Bronze Age Daggers
The images above were created in Photo
shop by assembling various parts of
bronze age artifacts from
Archeological finds .Note
Some of the images on this page are of actual artifacts
and others are assembled and enhanced in photoshop.
1 .2. Golden Daggers From the Royal Tombs of Ur
2500 BCE , Collection of The Chicago Oriental Institute
3. Gold Handled Dagger with Bronze Blade from Knosos the Island
1800 BCE, Enhanced in Photoshop
4. 5. 6. Mycenaean Gold Handled Daggers from Pylos
approximately 1600 BC
5. and 6. Reconstructed and created in photoshop from
parts, handles and blades.
Parts are Mycenaean 1600 BCE
8 . Egyptian Bronze Dagger with Ivory Handle 1550
BCE, The Louvre Museum, Paris France
9. TUTANKHAMUN ( NEBKHEPERURA - TUTANKHATEN ) circa.
1336 - 1327 BC Gold Blade , craftsmanship shows distinct Influences
from the Peloponnesian and/or Aegean cultures
10. Dagger gold Achaemenid Dynasty VI century BC, Iran
11. Bronze Dagger from Hebron in Canaan 1900 BCE with
A similar dagger may have been used by the Biblical Abraham
in the story of the Sacrifice of Isaac. This dagger is
an interpretation composed in Photoshop using a blade
from Hebron and a Bone Handle from Malta, both artifacts
are from the middle bronze age.
12. Bronze Dagger From Luristan (Iran) 1500 BCE
These images are conceptual composites of what
the personal Swords
and Daggers of Hyram Of Tyre and/or King Solomon
looked like in the 9th Century BCE. These are
created in photoshop and not to be confused with
an actual swords or archeological finds.
13. Bronze sword from Hajdusamson,Hungary 1600 BCE
14. Pair of Mycenaean Bronze swords with
guilded handles 16th Century BCE, see in the illustration
above that a similar sword was
illustrated at Mendinet Habu in 1200 BCE
15. Myceneanean Sword with Gold Handle 1600 BCE, Composite
illustration of blade and handle from Pylos created in
16. Short Bronze Sword, Luristan Culture of North Western
Iran 15th Century BCE.
17. Persian Sword with double pommel handle 900 BCE.
18. Amlash Culture Iran Bronze Sword 13th Century BCE
19. Sardinian Sword blade with Mycenean Handle Circa
20. Bronze Age sword Canaanite, 13th century BCE
source INA, University of Texas, Uluburan Wreck
21. Bronze sword of the British Isles from the 2nd Millennia
22. Bronze Sword from Eastern Germany Circa 1000 BCE
23. Rapier Blade Wessex Culture British Isles circa 14th
24 . Symitar from the Royal Tombs of UR Circa 2500 BCE
25 . Symitar from Egyptian New Kingdom (1570 - 1070 BCE)
Illustrations and weapon of the Scythians
(From Russian Ukraine) from Early Iron Age
Scythian warriors as portrayed on Greek Pottery of the
fifth century BCE. Their weapons of choice are slings,
bow and arrows and swords, while they have costumed the
horses to look like the sacred Ibex.
26. Scythian sword case
from the fifth Century BCE. During this timeframe the
Scythian Culture created gold artifacts of unsurpassed
beauty, in my opinion the esthetics of the artistry in
these items has never been improved upon or equaled.
Scythian Gold depicting weapons and dress of Scythian
5th Century BC
The griffin played
a prominent role in the Iconography of the Scythian Culture.
In the history of the Peloponnesian Peninsula the Mycenaeans
used the Icon of the griffin as did the Minoan's. The
prominent use of the same symbol in Scythia 1000 years
later in history strongly suggests a connectedness between
these cultures which may have constituted a shared culture
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