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Gallo-Roman 'Sun in Chariot' Figural Plaque Fragment

Lead; 46mm x 50mm/33.2gm

Circa 2nd-3rd century AD.

Con/ plow-broken; excellent old lead sandy orange brown patina. Click the second photo to view and compare to a complete plaque that sold here on NRC for $900.

Sadly plow-broken, the following is a description of what is normally presented - A rectangular lead plaque bearing a decorated arch enclosing a figural scene in three tiers. The upper corners are decorated with coiled serpent images facing each other across the arch. In the upper field is a male (Soli Invicto 'The Unconquered Sun', with radiate crown, right arm raised, left arm holding orb, wearing a tunic and cloak pinned at the right shoulder, standing in a quadriga with four horses advancing. Below this is a group of figures comprising a warrior in a crested helmet, with a shield and holding a spear behind a horseman with raised arms above a dolphin; in the centre is a standing female in a loose robe with a basket in her lap; to the right is a horseman advancing to the centre with raised arm trampling a female, and behind him a figure with raised right arm holding a branch. The lower tier includes a naked standing male with an animal mask above a cauldron, to his right a smaller figure seated beneath a tree; the central scene shows three figures seated at a round table, sharing food; to the right stands a pair of naked youths holding hands. The plaque probably formed part of the ornamental facade of a temple or a mausoleum.

Ref/ Ertl type B.3

Seller's Note/ Even broken, this a rare piece. Most are found in Museum collections. In hand, it's stunning. This may be a once-in-life-time opportunity for you own and display a remarkable artifact from ancient Rome that was certainly seen in a temple dedicated to the Roman Military cult of Soli Invicto.

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