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Height: 26.000 cm
Width: 15.000 cm (at base of tripod)
Room 57-59: Ancient Levant
Bronze female figurine
Syrian, about 7th century BC
A stand for an incense bowl
This bronze figure forms a stand which would originally have supported a bowl used for burning incense. Several similar examples exist, though it is not known precisely where any of them was found.
In this case the female figure and tripod were cast in one. The legs end in bull's hooves. The stand is likely to be a provincial derivative from finer models made for temples and palaces such as those at the Assyrian capitals.
The form of the woman is like the ivory handles of fans found at Nimrud, though these actually have their origins in Syria. The facial features and hairstyles on the finer surviving stands have also been compared with Syrian styles, but many of these may have been manufactured in Assyria itself. Like pillar figures the woman holds her breasts, suggesting she may be connected with the Canaanite deity Astarte.
P.R.S. Moorey, 'Some Syro-Phoenician bronze carayatid stands', Levant-1 (1972)