Masterpieces from Europe

Bronze Figurine, ca. 750–600 BC, Hallstatt, Austria, PM 40-77-40/9896
Bronze Situla, ca. 400-300 BC, Slovenia, PM 34-25-40/8418

Bronze Figurine

This bronze bovine figurine is the longest and most stylized of four such figures excavated in 1907 by the Duchess of Mecklenburg, an enthusiastic amateur archeologist, from a grave at the Hallstatt cemetery in the Austrian Alps. While the figure’s purpose remains a mystery, it is a fine example of the kind of cast bronze figural art that emerged in central Europe during the early Iron Age, 750–600 B.C.  P.W.

Bronze Situla

This bronze situla (from the Latin word for "bucket"), excavated from an elite man’s grave at Mecklenburg in Slovakia in 1905, captures the character of Early Iron Age material culture in Central Europe. Combining indigenous late bronze age forms with borrowed Mediterranean design motifs, this situla was originally used as a wine bucket by the people of the Southeastern Alpine area who were introduced to the ritual of wine drinking by the Greeks or the Etruscans.  P.W.