Luristan bronze dagger with grip insert

Price: on request
Object number
Object: Luristan bronze dagger with grip insert

Material: Bronze. Insert made of bone.

Period: 1100 BC to 900 BC.
Iron Age I.

Description:    Luristan bronze dagger. Handle with raised rim for grip inserts. Long, slim blade, tapering to the front. Parts of the original grip insert are preserved in the handle on both sides. This is particularly exciting about this piece. With most finds only the bronze is preserved, the grip insert has been lost or perished.

Background: Daggers were the standard weapons of Luristan warriors. The different types of daggers were named by archaeologists according to their type of handle. For the raised rim daggers, the vertical edge around the grip is the decisive feature.
Initially, riveted blades were used for daggers in Luristan. The 14th century BC saw daggers with handle which were made from a single piece of bronze. The edge surrounding the handle contained an insert, often consisting of bone, wood or metal. The raised rim daggers were otherwise simply designed and generally did not have elaborate decorations, as are known from axe heads of the same period. In the 10th century BC the full bronze daggers were replaced by iron weapons.

Dimensions: 40.0cm long.

Condition: Great condition. The bronze body is complete and intact apart from minor and probably ancient damages, particularly on the cutting edge and the oval end. Even the remains of the original bone grip inlay have been preserved, which is an exceptional rarity.

Provenance: Acquired by us in 2022 on the German art market. Previously in the Israeli family collection of art dealer Gideon Sasson. Incorporated into the collection in 1925. Exported in 2022 under Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA) permit no. 50526.

References: Cf. P. R. S. Moorey, Ancient Bronzes from Luristan (BM, 1974), plate II, A (BM 123060).
Cf. G. Zahlhaas, "Luristan, Antike Bronzen aus dem Iran", page 32, cat. 44.

Literature: St John Simpson and Susan La Niece, New light on old swords from Iran. The British Museum Technical Research Bulletin, Volume 4 (2010).
Moorey, Ancient Bronzes from Luristan (BM, 1974), pages 23f.
Bonnet, Die Waffen der Völker des Alten Orients, pages 42ff.

Authenticity: We unconditionally guarantee the authenticity of every artefact, all items are subject to our lifetime return policy on authenticity.