Saturday, 2 January 2021

Scythians: Warriors and Master Goldsmiths

Plaque unearthed from the Kul-Oba kurgan in eastern Crimea.
For most of the first millennium BC, the steppe between the Black Sea and China was the domain of Scythians – fierce nomadic warriors who were advanced metalworkers, wood-carvers and painters.

Heavily decorated shoe of a woman interred in a burial mound at Pazyryk. It’s made from red leather embellished with gold and tin, and the sole is ornamented with tiny beads and pyrite crystals stitched into the leather.

Half of a belt buckle; the other half was often but not always a mirror image.

Gold lion-griffin ornament, fourth century BC

Scythian button

Belt Plaque

Gold torque.
The Golden Pectoral from Tovsta Mohyla is an ancient Scythian treasure discovered in a burial kurgan in 1971. The pectoral is 24 karat gold. It weighs just over 2.5 pounds. The crescent is stylistically broken down into three sections. The top section reflects Scythian daily life.
The middle section is believed to represent Scythian connection to nature. The third section is thought to represent Scythian belief in the cosmos and their mythology.