In 1908 German archaeologists digging an exploratory trench struck upon an intact brick tomb with the remains of several burials and a great wealth of grave-goods. Among the latter were ceramic vessels, together with others of alabaster and objects in ivory. The jewellery in particular testifies to the high social rank of the two deceased, to whom, as the last buried, these bodily adornments could he ascribed. While a number items of jewellery have since been arbitrarily categorized as headbands and necklaces, the position in which these eleven rectangular plates of gold and lapis lazuli were found did indicate their function as part of a collar of necklace. The individual elements, made of gold and semi-precious stones, are largely uniform in their basic form and in the lengthwise subdivision of the surface. The effect of the collar derives above all from the alternation of colours and of smooth and filigree surfaces. The five golden plates offer an insight into goldsmith's technique: sections of half-cylinder are soldered onto a base plate, the semicircles being given an upturned rim and decorated with applied granulation. It is not certain that the two pectoral pendants in the form of zebu calves with gold loops formed part of the collar.


  • Title: Flat Collar
  • Creator: Unknown
  • Date Created: 14th or 13th century BCE
  • Location: Ashur, Iraq
  • Physical Dimensions: w2.4 x h27.5 cm ((Lenght))
  • Type: Collar
  • Medium: Gold, lapis lazuli, jasper (?)
  • Inv. no.: VA Ass 1008-1013, 1022, 1023
  • ISIL no.: DE-MUS-815718
  • External link: Pergamonmuseum, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin
  • Copyrights: Foto © bpk - Foto Agency / Staatliche Museen zu Berlin - Preußischer Kulturbesitz / Olaf M. Teßmer || Text: © Scala Publishers / Vorderasiatisches Museum, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin / Ralf-B. Wartke
  • Collection: Vorderasiatisches Museum, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin

Get the app

Explore museums and play with Art Transfer, Pocket Galleries, Art Selfie, and more


Google apps