Lyre Fragment

Bull Head


Location: On Display in the Middle East Galleries

From: Iraq | Ur

Curatorial Section: Near Eastern

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Object Number B17694B
Current Location Middle East Galleries - On Display
Provenience Iraq | Ur
Archaeology Area PG 789
Date Made ca. 2450 BCE
Section Near Eastern
Materials Gold | Shell | Lapis Lazuli | Bitumen | Silver
Iconography Bull Head

Gold and Lapis head of the Great Lyre. Eyes of head are either Conus or Strombus

CBS Register: Bull's gold head, and shell inlay plaques. Harp of the king. Reconstructed. PG 789

(A is the Plaque, B is the Head)

Bull's head in sheet gold with lapis beard found in grave 789 of the Royal Cemetery at Ur. There is a great deal of detail in the bull’s eyes, snout, and the curls of its beard, which represents the power of the king as well as the god Shamash. It was originally affixed to the front of a wooden lyre, the decayed remains of which were somewhat apparent in the soil when excavated.

Length 40 cm
Width 25 cm
Depth 19 cm
Credit Line British Museum/University Museum Expedition to Ur, Iraq, 1928
Other Number U.10556 - Field No SF

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