Pendant from the Aegina treasure

Step 3 of 10

Lovely face

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The first contradicting theories emerge when we turn to the face and head of our Master of Animals. He has an oval-shaped face and is wearing a diadem with a type of headdress on top, potentially made of feathers. He is also wearing large circular earrings. In examining this part of the pendant, we will find the two main theories for its origin: one proposing a Minoan The Minoan civilization preceded that of the Mycenaeans and flourished mainly on the island of Crete from around 3000 to 1100 BCE. The Mycenaean civilization probably came forth from the Minoans. origin, and the other a Levantine The Levant is a geographical term used for a large area in Western Asia, the land to the East of the Mediterranean. one.

In his 1979 book and in earlier articles, Reynold Higgins, Keeper of Greek and Roman Antiquities at the British Museum at the time, proposed that the treasure was Minoan, and not Mycenaean, as many before him had claimed. We will see more important arguments from Higgins later, but focusing on the head, he compares the style of our Master of Animals’ face to that of the faience Minoan ‘snake goddess’, also mentioned earlier as a Mistress of Animals (Fig. 12).R. Higgins, ‘The Aegina Treasure reconsidered’, The Annual of the British School at Athens 52 (1957), p. 42-57; R. Higgins, The Aegina treasure, an archaeological mystery (London, 1979).

Contrarily, others compare his face to that visible in a type of pendant often found in the Levant, that of the ‘abbreviated female’, a triangular pendant depicting a woman, but just her face, breasts, navel, and genitalia (Fig. 13).

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