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Photo by Peter Paul Geoffrion
Culture Group: Possibly PhoenicianCulture Group: or CypriotTitle:Shell-shaped dish Date:7th century BCE Medium:Gold Culture: Phoenician or Cypriot? Dimensions:2 × 6 inches (5.1 × 15.2 cm) Credit Line:Gift of Barbara Newborg, M.D., from the collection of Walter Kempner, M.D. Accession number:2006.1.216 Label Copy: Real tridacna (giant clam) shells from the Red Sea, often decorated with designs incised in their surfaces with a sharp tool, were used as cosmetic palettes and traded widely throughout the Mediterranean by the Phoenicians. Some, like the Nasher's example, were embellished with carved bird or human heads. This gold specimen is possibly unique, though silver examples are known.


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Photo by Peter Paul GeoffrionPhoto by Peter Paul GeoffrionPhoto by Peter Paul Geoffrion