Gold pendant in the form of a goat

Minoan, 1700-1550 BC
From Crete

The Cretan wild goat, with its distinctive long curving horns, was a favourite subject in Minoan art. Here, the goat is lying down, with its feet neatly tucked beneath it. The goat was also sometimes shown in the rocky, mountainous terrain that was its natural home. Minoan religion included worship at mountain-top shrines known as peak sanctuaries, and the wild goat seems to have been associated with such high and holy places. The goats are also shown as the prey in hunting scenes of the Bronze Age. Wild goats are now nearly extinct on the island due to hunting, though a very few of them still live in the more remote mountain districts of Crete.

The pendant is made of sheet gold. It has a loop for suspension on top of the goat's horns, and is decorated with three discs, very similar to those decorating some of the pieces in the Aigina treasure, for example the 'Master of Animals' pendant and two pairs of earrings.

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More information

Bibliography

R. Higgins, The Aegina Treasure: an archae (London, 1979)

Dimensions

Height: 5.000 cm
Length: 2.800 cm
Weight: 102.500 g

Museum number

GR 1876.5-13.1 (Jewellery 815)

GAA6161

Location

Find in the collection online



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