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A Neo-Assyrian Gypsum Alabaster Relief Fragment, probably from the North Palace of Ashurbanipal at Nineveh, reign of Ashurbanipal, 669-631 B.C.
Estimate
20,00030,000
LOT SOLD. 290,500 USD
JUMP TO LOT
33
A Neo-Assyrian Gypsum Alabaster Relief Fragment, probably from the North Palace of Ashurbanipal at Nineveh, reign of Ashurbanipal, 669-631 B.C.
Estimate
20,00030,000
LOT SOLD. 290,500 USD
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Antiquities from the Collection of the Late Clarence Day

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New York

A Neo-Assyrian Gypsum Alabaster Relief Fragment, probably from the North Palace of Ashurbanipal at Nineveh, reign of Ashurbanipal, 669-631 B.C.
Carved in low relief with an Assyrian soldier wielding a stick and leading two male Elamite prisoners marching to right, each with their hair styled in rows of echeloned curls and bound in a fillet with tasseled ends, one man turning back and gesturing at the soldier in protest.
4 1/8 x 4 1/8 inches
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Provenance

"acquired by the late Captain Jenkins during his term of service in the Persian Gulf," according to an old printed clipping (perhaps from an auction catalogue) glued to the back
Robin Symes, London, November 19th, 1984

Catalogue Note

A Farsi inscription in ink on the back of the plaque reads "A souvenir of the Eghbal'od Dowleh," a high official title or name in the Persian Empire during the Qajar period. The officer mentioned on the paper label could be Captain Griffith Jenkins, I(ndian) N(avy), a native of Penrallt, Cardiganshire. He was captain of the flag-ship of the fleet engaged in the Persian Gulf conflict in the 1850s (Cambrian Journal, vol. 4, 1857, p. 73). The monuments of Nineveh were excavated by Sir Austen Henry Layard in the 1840s.

After sundry minor clashes serious war broke out between Assyria and Elam in the mid-7th century; Assyria invaded Elam and eventually captured the twin Elamite capitals of Madaktu and Susa, and installed what they thought was a pro-Assyrian member of the Elamite royal house as king, Te-Umman. But this was a mistaken hope, and he allied himself with the Chaldaean tribes and also involved Shamash-shum-ukin, king of Babylon and no other than Ashurbanipal's brother. War was then renewed, against both Elam and Babylon, the latter defeated first and Shamash-shum-ukin finishing himself off in flames. Assyrians marched against Susa, devastated the whole of Elam, and violated the tombs of the Elamite kings; Te-Umman fled to the mountains but later returned to his other capital Madaktu, Susa now being desolate. The major battle of Til-Tuba followed and Te-Umman was killed and the Elamites finished off in circa 643 B.C. Ashurbanipal celebrated these important victories, both over the Elamites and the Babylonians under his faithless brother, extensively in his own North Palace on Kuyunjik the capital mound of Ninevah –R.D. Barnett, Sculptures from the North Palace of Ashurbanipal at Ninevah, London, 1976, including pp. 28-33: "Notes on the architectural remains," by G. Turner).

We are grateful to Geoffrey Turner for his help in cataloging this lot.

Antiquities from the Collection of the Late Clarence Day

|
New York