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Genevra Kornbluth.
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Last updated
June 3, 2020

Historical Archive: Weapons through 900 CE


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Standard of Ur, lapis lazuli, shell, and red limestone, c. 2600-2400 BCE, BM ME 121201. This work has its own page.
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Stele of Naram-Sin, pink limestone, 2254-2218 BCE, Louvre. For other views see Louvre.
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Exekias, black-figure amphora from Vulci with Ajax and Achilles playing dice, c.540-30 BCE, Vat 16757. This work has its own page.
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denarius of Julius Caesar, 48-47 BCE, MNW 219169 rev
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miniature tools or weapons, bronze, 1st to 3rd c., BM, 2975+
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sword: Medici cameo: emperor with genius, sacrificing poss. to Hope, 1st-3rd c., sardonyx cameo in gilded metal, Florence MA 14443. This work has its own page.
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club: Hercules and the Nemean lion, jasper, 1st-6th c., Kelsey 26014, Bonner 109
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spears: Gemma Augustea, banded agate cameo, 9/10-12 CE, KHM ANSA IXa 79. This work has its own page.
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bow case: painted sarcophagus from Crimea, late 1st/early 2nd c., Hermitage П.1899-81, which has its own page
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club: Hercules urinating, 3rd or late 15th c., sardonyx cameo, Florence MA 14612
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swords: Valerian (253-60) captured by Shapur I (241-72), Sassanian sardonyx cameo, c. 260 CE, CdM Babelon 360
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sword: Mars, 4th c., sapphire intaglio, Florence MA 14723. For modern impression see Florence MA.
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spear: Crispus, silver 2 siliquae of Constantinus I, Cologne 319, SMBMünz 18200817
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spears, quivers: Porphyry sarcophagus of Helena (d. c.330), 1st third of 4th c., Vat 238. This work has its own page.
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swords: Tetrarchs, porphyry, c.305, San Marco, Venice. This work has its own page.
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spear: Roma seated with Victory, Roman niccolo agate intaglio c.330 CE, CdM Chab. 2071
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Passion sarcophagus, marble, c.350 CE, Vat 31525. This work has its own page.
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Passion/tree sarcophagus, marble, Rome c.360, Vat 28591. For other views see Vatican Museums.
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short sword or knife: sacrifice of a captive funeral cushion, linen and wool loop textile with inset, 5th-6th c., Pushkin 5180
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bows: ivory pyxis, 6th c., eastern Mediterranean, VHM, loan from Sion CT. This work has its own page.
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spears: retinue of Justinian, apse wall mosaic, Ravenna, Church of San Vitale, 527-48. This work has its own interior and exterior pages.
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sword: Sacrifice of Isaac, presbytery mosaic, Ravenna, Church of San Vitale, 527-48. This work has its own interior and exterior pages.
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Barberini Diptych, ivory 527-65, Louvre OA 9063. This work has its own page.
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sword: Cup of Chosroes. Gold, rock crystal, red and green glass, Sassanian, 531-579. CdM Chab. 2538. This work has its own page.
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bow: Cathedra of Maximian, ivory, 546-56, RavArchMus, which has its own page
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swords, spear: Cathedra of Maximian, ivory, 546-56, RavArchMus, which has its own page with more weapons
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sword: Oseberg cart, 8th-early 9th c., OsloVSM, which has its own pages
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sword: St Mary Bishophill Jr, York, cross fragment with secular figures, millstone grit (sandstone), 8th-9th c., Yorkshire Museum 1979.53. For another view see York.
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inverted spear: Oseberg tapestry, c.834, OsloVSM, which has its own pages
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Charles the Bald prayer book cover ivories: psalms 26 and 24, c.860, Zurich Schweizerisches Landesmuseum AG-1311, DIG-3437
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swords: liturgical scenes, ivory, c.870-75? Louvre MR 368, MR 369. This work has its own page.
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Arnulf (reg. 887-99) seal: 896 Aug. 2, BHA KS81
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angel with sword and scabbard, marble, Byzantine 9th-10th c., MFAB