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Anatomical Cuirass

400 - 301 BC.

Museo Arqueológico de Granada

Museo Arqueológico de Granada

This piece appeared along the coast of Granada, underwater, in the bay of the former city of Sexi (Almuñécar), in which fragments of amphorae from the Punic period of other later shipwrecks were found. This bronze cuirass or breastplate, probably from the South of Italy, reproduced the anatomical scheme of the naked body, modelled on a large sheet of bronze. The V shape adapts to the curve of the neck and the two sides to the axillae. The pectoral muscles and, by means of incision or cutting, the nipples are marked. The abdomen muscles can also be seen, displaying the relief of the hips and the circle of the navel. The presence of this cuirass in the South of the Iberian Peninsula links this area to the trade in the South of Italy and Sicily since the last decades of the 5th century and throughout the 4th century BC. The anatomical bivalve cuirasses of this period are especially common to the area of Apulia, associated with burials of aristocrats. In this case, it appears to be the shipwreck of a boat which arrived at the Punic port, and the cuirass may have been a gift for a local aristocratic warrior. There is also the possibility that this may have been a war trophy acquired by an Iberian mercenary after his return from some battle in the South of Italy or in Sicily, but today this explanation is treated with caution and scepticism. There is another explanation: this may have been a sacrifice offering, an ex-voto after a happy voyage. This would link this war object to other weaponry found in the mouths of rivers or port entrances.

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Details

  • Title: Anatomical Cuirass
  • Date Created: 400 - 301 BC.
  • Location: Almuñécar. Granada
  • Type: Armor
  • Medium: Bronze

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