Phalera, Lion, 1st-2nd Cent A.D. Extremely Rare
Copper alloy; 9.5cm x 4cm x 2mm /16.6gm
Con/ Green and blue patina with sand fill; two small breaks at 12 and 6 o'clock, otherwise, as cast. Cleaned but not waxed.
Description/ A very bold and life-like presentation of the head of a male lion facing, surrounded by extended mane and ears, mouth snarling with tongue protruding. The eyes exhibit ancient glue where colored glass (?) would have been affixed (now missing)...and that's really rare, folks!
Seller's Note/ A phalera was a sculpted disk, usually made of gold, silver, bronze or glass, worn on the breastplate during parades by Roman soldiers who had been awarded it as a decoration or medal for military bravery in battle. Roman military units could also be awarded phalerae for distinguished conduct in action. Such awards were often mounted on the staffs of the unit's standards, as well.
Such ground-found and delicate thin-walled phalerae rarely, if ever, survive in this condition doing to nearly 2000 years of plowing.