Northern Greece, Thrace, Late Bronze Age, ca. 700 BCE. A wonderful high-grade silver spectacle (97.5% silver), or double spiral, fibula (brooch) created from a single length of gold wire, which has been tightly coiled in about eight revolutions at each end creating two large spirals. The spirals, connected by a raised loop, sit opposite one another in an attractive symmetrical composition. Weight: 39.3 grams Size: 3.2" W x 1.75" H (8.1 cm x 4.4 cm). Precious metal quality: 97.5% silver.
According to O. Hammer, "Neolithic and Bronze Age Europeans were crazy about spirals. The spiral is so pervasive in rock art, jewelry and architecture that it characterizes and unites cultures from Scandinavia to Egypt through several thousand years. It is a super-symbol, turning up everywhere, in ever-changing configurations and combinations. Scholars debate endlessly about its meaning—perhaps it represented the sun, perhaps it had a botanical origin, perhaps it signified ocean waves, or it was a symbol of eternity, or illustrated shamanistic experiences, or was just for decoration. Quite likely, several of these played a role, perhaps changing in relative importance over time. In any case, the massive use of spirals, often in ritualistic settings, indicates that they often carried some deep, mystical meaning, now forever lost by the passage of millennia and the victories of newer religions." (Hammer O. (2016) Pagan Coils. In: The Perfect Shape. Copernicus, Cham)
Provenance: ex-Phoenicia Holyland Antiquities; ex Taisei Gallery Collection Auction, New York City, New York, USA November 1992, Lot #144
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Intact! Very slight bending to form near center. Presents a very rich patina that has develop over approximately 2700 years.