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Animated Roman Bronze Panther Head Short Sword Handle


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Directory: Antiques: Regional Art: Ancient World: Roman: Pre AD 1000: Item # 1351664
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290 Fillmore St. #D
Denver, CO. 80206
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This rare piece is a Roman bronze weapon handle that is in the form of a panther head, and dates circa 1st-2nd century A.D. This attractive piece is approximately 3.5 inches long, by 1.5 inches wide at it's widest point, which is the width of the realistically designed panther head. This piece served as a weapon handle for a Roman dagger or a short sword, and may have served in a gladiatorial capacity, as the panther is a common symbol associated with gladiatorial armor. Another analogous gladiatorial handle, seen with gladiatorial daggers and short swords, is the eagle head type. Both of these types, the panther and eagle head handles, are rare to extremely rare on the market, and there are few recorded examples. The iron remains of the blade can still be seen within the hollow section of the piece, and there are also two bronze pins that held the blade into place. These bronze pins that run through this handle, were also hammered on each side of the piece, and this hammering securely riveted these pins into place. The head of the panther is not only very animated, but it is also a very powerful image. This very animated panther head is also very detailed, as there are silver inlaid eyes and fine details seen in the fanged growling mouth. The fanged mouth of the panther head is also seen biting down on a fragmented attachment ring. This piece also has a beautiful dark green patina with some spotty red highlights, and is an exceptional example for the type. This powerful piece is also mounted on a custom steel and Plexiglas display stand. Ex: Private Austrian collection, circa 1980's. (Note: Additional documentation is available to the purchaser.) I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition: