• latw-166-10
    Silver strainer. (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)
  • latw-166-20
    Silver strainer. (Courtesy of the Vedat Nedim Tör Museum, Istanbul)

Silver strainer

Late sixth or early fifth century BC, Late Lydian (Persian)
Uşak, Archaeological Museum, 1.50.96
Inventory No.
Object Type
Metalwork Type
Metal Vessel
Ikiztepe Tumulus
The strainer has a hemispherical bowl and a broad concave rim. The handle projects at a slight angle. Below a plain zone, the bowl is perforated in a swirling pattern; 21 perforated arcs, curving counterclockwise, radiate from the center on the floor of the bowl, and are surrounded by an upper zone of 61 arcs that swirl in the opposite direction. The stem of the handle is broad and flat, narrowing slightly at the midway point. Along the length of its upper face, two narrow ridges run from the edges at the inner end and converge towards the outer end. Where the handle meets the bowl it is decorated across its width by a molding of alternately broad and narrow ridges. Riveted to the outside of the bowl is a palmette, with details chased and engraved. The opposite end of the handle tapers sharply and curves round in an upturned hook of round section which terminates in a duck’s head. The duck’s plumage is incised and there is a narrow collar around its neck. The bowl of the strainer is hammered, the handle cast. There are corrosion holes in the bowl and the rim.

Two broadly similar silver strainers are in the British Museum (WA 118462, 117840), one is in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York (1973.11.7), and there is a bronze example from Nimrud (Calah), all of the Achaemenid period. Besides their use in Near Eastern wine services, strainers were also used in Greece and feature in Attic red-figure symposium scenes.

Duck-head terminals also appear on the silver spoon (Özgen and Öztürk 1996, no. 67) and bronze handle (Özgen and Öztürk 1996, no. 74). Duck-headed lugs are a feature of the alabastra (Özgen and Öztürk 1996, nos. 75, 76, 77, 78, and 229) and the incense burner (Özgen and Öztürk 1996]no. 71)” (Özgen and Öztürk 1996). Total length 0.25 m, depth of bowl 0.068 m, diameter at rim 0.128 m, weight 325.8 g.

From the Ikiztepe Tumulus.
Özgen, “Lydian Treasure”; Baughan, “Lydian Burial Customs”
Özgen and Öztürk 1996, no. 64.