Bronze Swordsman
M-141
Bryn Mawr College Collections
Richard C. Bull Collection

 

 

Hittite Culture

There are two pieces in the Richard C. Bull Collection which may be Hittite. These assignments, however, come either from the art dealers themselves or from the research of the curator. Further, this research has shown that these objects have few, thin parallels in Hittite culture, but none in any other culture examined. One of these is a bronze figurine of a swordsman, M-141. It was purchased from J.J. Klejman who claimed that it is second millennium BCE Hittite. Scholars have suggested this figure is possibly Etruscan. There do not seem to be any parallels within Hittite art or Etruscan art. No parallels for any of his features or accessories have been found in the collections or excavation records for Iran either. His prominent nose and chin and large hands do look rather Etruscan, compared with Etruscan tomb wall paintings, but the way the mouth is rendered is very odd. His nose and eyes also look similar to the Syrian figures in this collection. His curious cap looks like those depicted in Scythian art. It is difficult to find any culture within which to assign the figure because of the peculiar sword and rendering of the mouth. This piece, for now, remains a mystery.