About this object

This white stone amulet is carved in the form of a shrewmouse. The flat underside is decorated with a drilled design. When pressed in clay or wax it would leave an impression which may have been used to mark ownership or guarantee authenticity. A hole pierced through the width of the amulet allowed it to be threaded and carried by the owner. Two holes in place of eyes once held inlays, perhaps of coloured stone or metal. Details of the ears and legs are finely carved. The amulet is of a type known from the ancient site of Jemdet Nasr (Uruk III culture) of southern Mesopotamia.

Object specifics

  • Type
    Personal Object
  • Culture
    Uruk III
  • Artist/Maker
  • Place made
    Asia: Western Asia: Iraq
  • Date made
    3000 BC about
  • Materials
  • Location
    Item not currently on display
  • Acquisition
    Puchased from Sotheby & Co Auction House
  • Collector
  • Place collected
    Asia: Western Asia: Iraq
  • Date collected
    1967 before
  • Measurements
    22 mm x 16 mm x 58 mm; 7/8 in x 5/8 in x 2 5/16 in
  • Related people
    Sotheby's ( Previous owner)


Previous owners

  • Sotheby's

    Owned from: Unknown or unrecorded
    How acquired: Unknown or unrecorded
    Owned until: 1967
    Disposal method: Sold
Object view = Humanities
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