• latw-12-1
    Relief from Gökçeler. (©Archaeological Exploration of Sardis/President and Fellows of Harvard College)

Relief from Gökçeler

Probably early fifth century BC, Late Lydian (Persian)
Manisa, Archaeological and Ethnographic Museum, 9156
Inventory No.
Limestone, Stone
Object Type
Sculpture Type
Relief, Human Figure
“Brownish yellow chalky limestone. Figure stands on a 0.18 m high plinth to left in a long-sleeved, knee-length tunic and sandals, holding a flower bud forward in right hand and a bird at side in left hand. Hair in tight curls. Lips and eyes around iris bear traces of red paint, … only the soles of the sandals survive. Tool marks include only the flat chisel. A squarish dowel hole on the left side of the stele (W. 0.05, H. 0.06; ca. 0.07 from the front face, 0.09 from the top) and traces of red pigment (miltos) on the lower right side of the stele …” (Roosevelt 2009, 241). Height 1.78 m; width 0.545 m; total thickness 0.24 m; relief thickness 0.034-0.040 m. 
Reportedly “discovered during plowing of field between the Kayacık River and the Yayakıldırık-Kayacık road in Gökçeler and brought to the Manisa Museum on November 20. … Seventeen finely worked blocks of the same limestone were seen stacked along the edges of the same field in 2001. They appeared to belong to a ruined tumulus chamber tomb …” (Roosevelt 2009, 241). The “straps of sandals must originally have been have been painted;” the dowel hole and pigment traces on the right side of the stele “indicate that the piece was not freestanding, but joined other blocks” (Roosevelt 2009, 241). Short hair and short skirt suggest that the figure is male. The bird resembles a chicken, but lacks a crest. Roosevelt compares the figure to those painted on interior walls of the burial chamber in the tumulus called Aktepe near ancient Bagis and modern Güre in eastern Lydia, and identifies all as “gift-bearing honorants of the dead” (Roosevelt 2009, 175). See also Nos. 189-195.
Özgen, “Lydian Treasure”.
Roosevelt 2009, 160-161, 241; forthcoming study by C.H. Roosevelt.