Measurements: 3.9 cm − height, 11.7 cm − height with stand, 5.4 cm − width


Description: A heavy spherical Egyptian breccia stone macehead, pierced longitudinally for attachment to a wooden shaft. Maceheads of this shape have been found in Naqada I (4400 - 3500 BC) tombs and were later replaced by piriform maceheads. This item comes mounted on a custom wooden stand.


Maces were extensively used in Egypt and neighbouring Canaan from the middle of the 4th millennium BC to the middle of the 3rd. Using the mace required a rather great physical force; such weapons would have been slung around in battle to injure the enemy. In many places, even after its usage was abandoned by the military, it remained a symbol of power for the rulers. For instance, Karnak reliefs, Seti I was depicted on foot wielding a mace, smiting his enemies. They are common in Predynastic and Early Dynastic graves but their small size suggests a ritual or symbolic purpose rather than practical use.


Provenance: Ex Mayfair, London antiquities dealer.


Reference: Christie's sale 2605, lot 102.

Christie's sale 3403, lot 23.


Period: Predynastic Period, 4400-3500 BC (Naqada I)


Condition: Very fine, intact, with minor chipping to the top and bottom apertures.


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