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Lot 2485: Western Asiatic Plaque with Human-Headed Owl

Antiquities: Day 4

by TimeLine Auctions

December 9, 2016

London, United Kingdom

Live Auction
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Description: 19th-18th century BC. A rectangular baked clay plaque with standing human-headed bird, possibly an owl. 91 grams, 96mm (3 3/4"). From a German collection; acquired on the German art market before 1990. The body of this bird is very similar to the owl from the famous Burney relief with standing nude female known as Queen of the Night. The head element is unusual and it may represent the goddess/demon Lilith, who is connected with owls especially in Hebrew tradition (Isiah 34:14"). In Mesopotamian religion this demon was known as lilitu and haunted the desert and open country and was especially dangerous to pregnant women and children. She was also believed to cause impotence in men and sterility in women. [No Reserve]

Condition Report: Fine condition.

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