Luristan bronze comes from the province of Lorestan, a region situated in the area of modern South-Western Iran. In ancient times a number of nomadic populations, such as the Medes, the Kassites and eventually the Persians, settled in the area. Due to the nomadic nature of the tribes, none of the Luristan bronzes were of great size, since it was required for them to be light and portable. Their artwork mainly comprises ornaments, vessels and weapons. Cast spike-butted axes are hallmarks of Luristan bronze weaponry Early Iron Age, between 1200 and 1000 BC. Most of Luristan bronze items have been recovered in funerary contexts. This beautiful axe head displays a vivid blue patina, due to its prolonged contact with leather. The ammonia used in Ancient times for the tanning of hides and skins chemically reacted with the bronze, resulting in this beautiful intense blue patination.
To learn more about the metalwork of ancient Luristan, visit our relevant blog post: Ancient Luristan and the Luristan Bronzes.