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Bear Chain-Holder
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Bear Chain-Holder

Description Exhibitions Provenance Credit
Description This golden bear, its paws grasping an open tube, probably served as a chain holder. The abstract pattern of openwork on the animal's sides is a distinctive feature of Sarmatian goldwork. Competing with the jewelry of Achaemenid Iran (at the southeastern edge of Sarmatian territory), which incorporated extensive inlays and enamel, the Sarmatians included the perforations and sockets that served as settings for such embellishments without actually adding the inlays. The resulting holes and punches reflect the anatomy and musculature of the bear.
  • Russian Art: Icons and Decorative Arts from the Origin to the Twentieth Century. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1959-1960.
  • Bedazzled: 5,000 Years of Jewelry from the Walters Art Museum. Frist Center for the Visual Arts, Nashville; The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art, Sarasota; The Walters Art Museum, Baltimore. 2006-2009.
  • Bedazzled: 5,000 Years of Jewelry. El Paso Museum of Art, El Paso. 2010.
Provenance Walters Art Museum, 1954, by purchase.
Credit Museum purchase, 1954

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1st century CE
Accession Number
H: 1 5/8 in. (4.1 cm)
Location Within Museum
Not On View


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