Selected and rare materials, excerpts and observations from ancient, medieval and contemporary authors, travelers and researchers about Cyprus.
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my labours in the district of Salamis, these objects of antiquity consist for the most part of the dark green and black loadstone or hǽmatite, of steatite, or of jasper, these being the materials commonly employed in their manufacture. The mythological and miscellaneous engravings on their surfaces are usually extremely archaic and rude, if not rough, in respect to the art which was employed in their manufacture and execution. The tools were shaped with an obtusely angular edge, probably fragments of ακονη or emery stone, a material of great antiquity as to its use by the lapidary and gem engraver, which, down to the age of Theophrastus, was imported from Armenia for the needs of the engraver. Most of the cylinders in the Lawrence-Cesnola collection are in the Archaic Babylonian style, which preceded the rise of the Assyrian style in the fourteenth century B.c. Several shew what may be termed the Hittite style of art. I am indebted to the kindness of Professor Sayce for the greater part of the following notes, descriptive of the styles and subjects of the most important of these very ancient remains from Cyprus. " These intaglios are partly Assyro-Phœnician, partly Greek, partly what I would term Cypriote. The latter are by far the most numerous, and form a peculiar and very interesting class apart, which has already become known to us from the excavations of General di Cesnola. But their number has been largely increased by Major A. P. di Cesnola's discoveries. The art displayed in them is extremely rude, and is modelled after a Babylonian prototype. But I doubt whether they are direct attempts to imitate the products of Babylonian art; they rather presuppose an intermediate stage of art. This is not Phœnician, as is usually supposed, but, as I believe, Hittite. Hittite carved stones found in the neighbourhood of Aleppo display exactly the same style of art, and represent the same subjects as the engraved gems of Cyprus. The latter, however, it must be remembered, are not confined to Cyprus; similar intaglios have been found elsewhere in the Levant; and the art, therefore, which they exhibit, has, I believe, like the so-called Cypriote Syllabary, made its way from the Hittite territory through Asia Minor into Cyprus. The art of the Hittites, so far as we are acquainted with it at present, was based upon that of early Babylonia, not of Assyria. " Among the numerous intaglios in the Lawrence-Cesnola collection, there are very many which I must pass over in silence, as I have nothing to say about them. Those which I shall specify are remarkable either from their designs or from the presence of inscriptions. " The large number of objects of Cypriote art gives this collection of engraved stones a special interest, and is of great importance in settling the relation of the art of the early gems found in the Levant to that of the gems of Western Asia, and more particularly Babylonia. Among the symbols which most frequently recur in this class of antiquities of the Lawrence-Cesnola collection, attention should be specially paid to the representation of the image of the Paphian goddess, the ox-head, the sun-circle, the figure' which may perhaps be intended to represent the winged solar disk, the serpent, and the curious spear-like instrument placed in the hand of a human figure." To the following list, the paragraphs marked [S] are Professor Sayce's notes. 120

1. A fine cylinder (fig. 128), of which the engraving is a Cypriote imitation of Babylonian work. Merodach, in battle with the dragon Tiamat, wears the flounced dress of the Babylonian priests, and holds the harpe in his hand. There are perhaps two Cypriote characters on the gem, basi, for βασιλευς [S.] 7-8ths inch long (see No. 54).
2. This cylinder (fig. 129), is manifestly a rude imitation of a Babylonian gem, representing the battle between the god Merodach and the demon-birds. [S.] . 7-8ths inch long.
3. A cylinder engraved (fig. 130) in the style known as Phœnico-Egyptian, but strongly coloured by Assyrian art. A dove is being presented to Astarte. [S.] A griffin winged, and a lion sejant, are also represented, with an emblem like a goat's head, perhaps of Hittite origin. 3-4ths inch long.
4. This cylinder (fig. 131) is of Babylonian workmanship. Three winged figures, two of which have birds' heads, stand side by side. All three figures have boots with turned-up ends, and two hold the sacred tree. [S.] Two of the figures hold gazelles by the hind legs. Fine work. 1 inch long.
5. In the Babylonian style. The Asiatic goddess stands on a pedestal with an animal in either hand. At the side is, a winged monster, and two crosses or stars below (see No. 15). A worshipper

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