• latw-137-1
    Ivory disk earring. (©Archaeological Exploration of Sardis/President and Fellows of Harvard College)

Ivory disk earring

Date
Ca. mid-sixth century BC, Lydian
Museum
Manisa, Archaeological and Ethnographic Museum, 6423
Museum Inventory No.
6423
Sardis or Museum Inv. No.
BI85.005
Material
Ivory
Object Type
Jewelry and Ornaments
Site
Sardis
Sector
MMS
Trench
MMS-I 85.1
Locus
MMS-I 84.1 Locus 34
B-Grid Coordinates
E144.6 / S69.3 *100.3
Description
Flat disc, pierced at center. Front side carefully decorated with an incised 18-petalled rosette, surrounded by panels with dots in centers, separated by double lines. Reverse plain, smoothly finished. Broken and mended, almost complete. Diameter 0.031 m, thickness 0.001-0.0022 m.
Comments
From a Lydian house destroyed in the mid-sixth century BC (Area 1, with Nos. 16, 62, 64, 65, 66, 68, 72, 73, 75, 81, 87, 88, 96, 97, 100, 102, 103, 138); found in a collection of unguent vessels, jewelry (including the faience hawk No. 138), and other personal items, perhaps originally stored in a box (Cahill, “City of Sardis”). No trace of attachment is preserved; it may have been in wire, now missing, or in a perishable substance. The identification as an earring is suggested, however, by the depiction of similar earrings, for instance on the ivory head of a woman (No. 52), on the figure on a terracotta revetment (No. 56), and on a painting from the Aktepe Tumulus (Özgen, “Lydian Treasure,”depicted in blue, perhaps reflecting the Lydian custom of painting or dyeing ivory, see Dusinberre, “Lydian Ivories”), and by somewhat similar disk-shaped earrings, such as No. 117.
See Also
Cahill, “City of Sardis”.
Bibliography
Greenewalt et al. 1988, 69, fig. 10.
Author
NDC