©J. Paul Getty Trust

Causey, Faya. Cat. 2, Pendant: Female Holding a Child (Kourotrophos) with Bird, Ancient Carved Ambers in the J. Paul Getty Museum
Ed. Faya Causey. Los Angeles: Getty P, 2012. museumcatalogues.getty.edu. Web. 15 December 2018.

Cat. 2, Pendant: Female Holding a Child (Kourotrophos) with Bird

Etruscan, 600-550 B.C.
Height: 8.3 mm; width: 4.9 mm; depth: 2.2 mm; Diameter of suspension holes: 2 mm; Weight: 48 g
Cat. 2 - Female Holding a Child with Bird Cat. 2.1 - Female Holding a Child with Bird, left side Cat. 2.2 - Female Holding a Child with Bird, right side Cat. 2.3 - Female Holding a Child with Bird, back
600-550 B.C.
Height: 8.3 mm; width: 4.9 mm; depth: 2.2 mm
Diameter of suspension holes: 2 mm
Weight: 48 g
Orientalizing Group


The pendant is in good condition, with a firm, smooth, stable surface. Before its entry into the Getty Museum, the two broken sections of the pendant were reattached and a synthetic fill was added to the break that runs along the left contour below the feet of the smaller figure. There are additional small chips on the reverse along the break and on the boot toes of the larger figure. There are visible inclusions in the fissure at the center, between the two figures, and in the midsections of each figure. The back surface and much of the front are covered with a dusty, light yellow ocher layer of degraded amber. In ambient light, the piece is reddish brown with some translucent areas; in transmitted light, the object is translucent and ruby red.


The pendant is conceived fully in the round and is composed of two frontal figures in a side-by-side pose, with a long-necked waterbird at the lower right. The human figures are identified as a woman and child because of their proportions, morphological (facial) features, dress, hair, and form of the upper torsos. The woman extends the full length of the amber and fills approximately one half of the composition. The child is carved into the upper section of the other half; beneath its feet is a spur of amber, which might be read as a groundline. Below the child, at the bottom, is the bird. It stands on the same plane as the woman. Since the bird is represented only on the obverse and the triangular depression above its head is inside the garment, it should be read as standing within the shelter of the woman’s outer garment.

Despite the difference in scale between the figures and in some of the details, both share the same head-to-body proportion, as well as dress and hairstyle. Their facial characteristics are comparably fashioned (even if they are not identical): the forehead, eyebrow ridge, temple region, and nose are conceived as a single modeled unit composed of a continuous curving form from the top edges of the head to the end of the nose. The slightly bulging, almond-shaped blank eyes are fitted neatly beneath the eyebrow ridge, the outer canthi higher than the inner ones, and the right eyes slanted higher at the outer canthi. Their noses are long and narrow (that of the woman is slightly wider), with delicate nostrils. The mouths are wider than the noses. The lips curve into slight smiles; the lower lips are slightly wider than the upper. The cheeks and lower faces are wide and rounded. The chins are short; in profile, they protrude to the level of the root of the nose. While the two faces are very similar, there are minor differences between them. The child’s face is finer in structure, her features smaller, and her chin more pointed. There is a distinct nasolabial line on the woman’s face; there is none on the child’s.

Both figures wear a similar undergarment. There is no neck detail; the garment is indicated only by the hem and lower section of a long skirt. Both also wear close-fitting veils over their heads. The front of the hair is just visible at the brow. The woman’s left frontal hair lock descends from her temples to just below her breasts; the child’s (on her right side) ends at the shoulder. The same heavy outer garment covers both figures. The line parallel to the front edge of the mantles may be a turnback or fold of the cloak; alternatively, it may represent the seam closing the lower edge of the sleeve. With her left arm and hand, the woman encircles the child; she places her right hand on her own chest. The tear-shaped form emerging from the border of the cloak may be the top of her thumb, although it is very large. Alternatively, it might represent the tip of a lotus blossom. The child’s arms are not visible. The woman is barefooted: four toes and the instep are delineated. There is no elaboration of the child’s feet. The plump bird’s body and legs are in a resting pose (the feet are visible), the neck is stretched back, with the head reverted, and the right wing is raised.

As is the case for all of the amber objects in this group, the original form of the amber blank appears to have played a key role in the composition. The nodule’s shape is suggested by the placement, size, and stance of the figures, and by the depressed area between the adult and child.

There are small drill holes in the corners of each figure’s mouth. Abrasion marks are visible underneath the chins, along the left body contour, around the head and neck of the bird, and between the feet of the adult. There are engraved lines around the eyes, separating the lips, along the front edges of the mantles, and in the hair plaits. The single perforation has two holes, one exit between the two heads at the position of the ears, and the second exit in the indentation between the two heads. The pendant probably was suspended from a strand or strands knotted at the base of the lower hole so that the piece hung as if the figures were standing.


There is no exact parallel for this pendant. In style, 77.AO.85 is very like others in the Getty group; it shares comparisons with them and is equally complex in its relationship to contemporary and earlier art, with Greek (Cretan, Ionian, and Peloponnesian), Cypriot, and Near Eastern objects. The subject, like that of 77.AO.84 (cat. no. 1), is a kourotrophic divinity. The iconography is underlined by the compositional format and the chosen material, amber. The dress and the hairstyles of the two figures identify them as female. The smaller figure likely represents a child rather than an infant since it is “standing on upright ankle.”[1] The active pose of the goose contrasts with the stillness of the human figures. Because the adult and child are frontal, standing, and stationary (and the adult wingless), it is unlikely that an abduction scene is represented.[2]

The bird of 77.AO.85 is schematic but telling. The carver indicated some salient features that suggest that a particular species is represented: the round head, long, undercurved bill, and distinctive form of the tail feathers aid in identifying the fowl as a white-fronted goose.[3]

There are many similarities between this pendant and the Female Holding a Child (Kourotrophos) (cat. no. 1), presented above. There are also differences in the pose, hairstyle, and manner of covering the heads. Only 77.AO.85 includes a bird. The woman of 77.AO.84 is hatted, no hair is showing, and the hood section of her mantle is down. No hair shows on the child, and it is wrapped in a mantle. Both figures are shod. In contrast, both figures of 77.AO.85 have their heads covered by a common mantle, show hair at the brow, and wear temple locks. The woman of 77.AO.85 is barefooted. No long chiton or other undergarment is delineated for the figures of 77.AO.84, yet in this pendant, the bottom hem of the undergarment is shown. If the protrusion emerging in the area of the chest from the front closure of the cloak of 77.AO.85 is a thumb, and the hand is thus flattened on the breast, the gesture is similar to that of 77.AO.84 and to both women of the Addorsed Females pendant (cat. no. 3). As discussed above in the entry for 77.AO.84, this hand gesture has been variously interpreted. It is likely one with complex meanings, but it certainly had a fertility aspect and perhaps a funerary one. Avowal or promise also may be inherent. On the other hand, the droplike shape could represent the tip of an unopened lotus blossom, a subject of great antiquity in ancient art and a symbol of youth, fertility, and rebirth. The lotus blossom may have been thought especially apt for an unfurled young life, as it was in Egypt.[4]

The type of undergarment worn by each figure of 77.AO.85 cannot be determined, since only the hem and lower edge of a skirt are indicated. There is no articulation at the neck. This might suggest that the carver neglected these aspects of dress or that the figures of 77.AO.85 wear skirts only beneath their mantles. If this is the case, one possible parallel is the bronze divinity from the Vulcian “Isis” Tomb, whose only garment may be a skirt.[5]

Amber comparisons for 77.AO.85 include the other five in the Getty group and two others in London and Philadelphia, an unprovenanced pendant in the form of two standing figures in the British Museum,[6] and a pendant in the form of a female figure, possibly from Ascoli Piceno, in Philadelphia (University of Pennsylvania, Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology).[7] An ivory carving of a seated female figure, part of a furnishing from Pianello di Castelbellino, has the distinctive short neck, short-set body, and facial profile of the ambers.[8]

For the figures of 77.AO.85, the best comparisons among Etruscan small bronzes are found in Emeline Richardson’s Early Etruscan Ladies, Series B, Group 1,[9] the same group that helps to situate 77.AO.84 and 77.AO.81.1. Bronzes in Florence (Museo Archeologico Nazionale 225) and London (British Museum 1907.3–11.1) are particularly relevant for their body proportions, facial features, and overall combination of dress elements. Florence, Museo Archeologico Nazionale 27, and Leiden, Rijksmuseum van Oudheden H3 ZZZZ 1, provide the best parallels for the cloak of 77.AO.85. The “Etruscan-ness” of 77.AO.85 and the related ambers and bronzes is brought out further when they are compared to large-scale Etruscan figures. They share with the gypsum figure in London (from the Polledrara Cemetery at Vulci), the pair of limestone figures from Casale Marittimo, and some early Chiusine limestone figures a solidity and retention of the permanent materials in the sculptures.[10]

Potnia Theron figures stamped on a number of bucchero kyathos handles—two excavated at Poggio Civitate and others likely from Chiusi[11]—are important comparisons, not only for composition and style, but also for specific features such as the birds and the figure’s temple locks. As L. Bonfante has outlined, the Greek-influenced Etruscan fashioning of temple locks was popular from the end of the seventh through the first half of the sixth centuries.[12] Comparable temple locks are worn by some funerary female busts from Chiusi, by the bronze divinity from the Vulcian “Polledrara Tomb” or “Isis Tomb,” and by the standing female bronze from the Brolio deposit.[13] The amber figures’ locks are most like the latter’s.

Not only might the hairstyle be Greek-derived, so too might aspects of the style and iconography. Both Peloponnesian and South Ionian stylistic aspects of 77.AO.85 (and of the Divinity Holding Hares, 77.AO.82 [cat. no. 4], and the other Kourotrophos, 77.AO.84) are brought out by comparison to certain Arcadian and Sicyonian bronzes of Hermes Kriophoros and of other unnamed shepherds.[14] The ambers and bronzes have a related solidity of sculptural forms and similar modeling of the bodies beneath the dress and relative proportions (head-to-body and torso-to-leg length); they also all have thin arms and small hands and feet. (The small hands and small feet are also characteristic of the four largest figures from the Brolio find, the bronze statuettes of a female and three warrior males.) The backs of 77.AO.85 and 77.AO.82 are especially like those of the Peloponnesian bronzes. A comparison to the Man in Cloak in Providence, to cite one example, is telling.[15]

The South Ionian aspect is apparent when the ambers are compared to the most “Samian” of Etruscan bronzes. For instance, the “Kneeling Archer” in Providence[16] is akin in facial details, general physical type, sculptural proportions, and smooth modeling. The South Ionian aspects of the amber pendants are elicited by comparison to an ivory of a horse-tamer and to a wood sculpture of two figures, both thought to be Samian.[17] Alfonsina Russo suggests the existence of an Ionian, specifically Samian-influenced, amber carving atelier in the Metaponto area, with two examples: the seated amber figure from a grave at Tolve and another from Tomb 122 at the Rutigliano-Purgatorio necropolis.[18]

The common mantle and the goose may be iconographic details that help one to interpret the meaning and functions of 77.AO.85. The mantle shelters the figures beneath it and separates them from the outside: it can serve both literally and figuratively as a sign of protection.[19] The common mantle can be interpreted as an ancient fertility motif, a signifier of matrilineal descent, a symbol of marriage and procreation, and more simply as a protective device.

How does the goose function in this pendant? Is it a symbol or attribute, or does it perform some temporal or narrative role? Long-necked birds are among the earliest sculpted objects: one of the earliest is the ducklike (perhaps) bird, seen in profile, from Uruk, of about 3000 B.C.[20] In Egypt the goose is one of the forms of the solar god Atum. Early in Etruscan art, in illustrations of both landscape and the built environment, waterfowl are in residence, and they are represented as resting, standing, or in action. Birds, especially waterfowl, feature prominently on the bronze objects from Iron Age Italy. Ducks, geese, and swans are among the most numerous subjects of figured ambers found at sites in Greece, Etruria, and Latium.[21] Long-necked and short-legged waterfowl may be the most frequent of all faunal decoration in earliest Etruscan imagery, embellishing countless objects found in tombs. Images of female divinities with waterfowl, usually in the schema of the goddess known as Potnia Theron, are found on bronzes, including vessels and ornaments, as early as the eighth century B.C.

Early Etruscan sculptural images of divinities, male or female, defined by attributes are relatively rare, and it is significant that among them are goddesses with birds, mainly waterfowl and raptors. Among the sculptured representations are the early-sixth-century bronze divinity with a horned bird from the Vulcian “Polledrara Tomb,” or “Isis Tomb,” and a slightly later freestanding bronze statuette in Cortona with a large bird of prey (perhaps an eagle) perched on her head.[22] The latter is comparable to the Laconian (or possibly Tarentine) divinity that forms the handle of a bronze hydria of about 570 found at Grächwil, Switzerland.[23] Female divinities with birds are to be found in Etruscan bucchero, painted vases, and gold objects of adornment (namely earrings, pendants, and plaques). Many are in the Potnia Theron schema and some are represented in the bird-atop-the-head pose.[24] Divinities with birds (again both waterbirds and raptors) on contemporary Greek vases (primarily Corinthian and Laconian) and on a series of ivory plaques from the Spartan sanctuary of Artemis Orthia include depictions of both schemata.[25] An Etruscan mirror support of fifth-century date is a later relevant example: it represents an old-fashioned kore figure wearing what appears to be a pointed hat with an upturned rim.[26] The join to the mirror is in the form of addorsed, upside-down swans.

Above are listed the images of female divinities with birds. With the possible exception of the lion- or hare-wielding Mistresses of the Animals, no other divinities as such are represented with animals or birds. The only other example of a kourotrophos with a bird known to me is a much later type of Etrusco-Latial terracotta votive statue from Satricum, of fourth- to second-century date. In these terracottas the woman is seated, the child is in her lap, and a bird is standing in front. B. M. Fridh-Haneson posits that this and related multifigured, single-mantled terracotta votives are Orphic-Dionysiac, and that they represent rebirth to eternal life by divine adoption, a hoped-for assimilation and identification with Dionysos.[27]

What roles are played by the bird of 77.AO.85? Might the fowl act as an attribute, signify the location of the figure’s divine actions, or point to a specific activity? After all, the bird is in action, in contrast to the static pose of the figures. Might the goose signify transit and rebirth[28] or designate the figure as the Greek Artemis? It is perhaps not a native Italian divinity, such as the Etruscan Artumes (or Artames or Aritimi), who “never became mistress of the wild animals or even goddess of the hunt, as she had been in Greece.”[29]

The elaborate perforation system of the pendant, which when strung would have maintained the upright posture of the figures, strongly suggests that 77.AO.85 was suspended or worn or was attached to something before its ultimate burial. As a shining ornament, 77.AO.85 was a large, glittering jewel figured with potent imagery. As a permanent amulet, it could have been considered as theomorphic, one that would have offered its wearer, on earth, in the tomb, or in the afterworld, the protection of the deity represented. Both material and subjects were the province of persons of elevated social rank, members of the religious and political elite. In life, its owner could have shown herself to be a votive of the divinity represented: the combination of material and subject would have played a powerful danger-averting and protective role. In the tomb, 77.AO.85 might offer special protection and even guidance to the deceased in the fraught voyage to the afterworld.


  1. See cat. no. 1, n. 35.

  2. For a recent discussion of images of pursuit and abduction in Etruscan art and the possible ambiguities of meaning, see A. Carpino, Discs of Splendor: The Relief Mirrors of the Etruscans (Madison, WI, 2003), pp. 14–16, 19–21.

  3. For the identification of the bird, see Houlihan 1986, pp. 57–59. On the conventions of representing birds, see Ruuskanen 1992. Douglas Causey (pers. comm.) corroborates the identification of the image as that of a white-fronted goose. The bird “breeds in parts of northern Europe and Asia and winters in parts of Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and North Africa” (Houlihan 1986, p. 57). In ancient Egypt, the standard hieroglyphic sign for a goose is generally taken to represent this species. In captivity, they are a sociable and peaceful bird and thus would have been an excellent goose to domesticate, unlike some other species. Then as now in Egypt, the white-fronted goose is a delicacy, and it appears that ancient Egyptians looked upon it as one of the more desirable table geese (Houlihan 1986, p. 59). The species is still found in Italy today.

  4. If this is the tip of a lotus blossom, the amber might be compared to an unusual type of New Kingdom Egyptian statuette and to certain Greek terracottas and plastic vases of youthful figures holding a single lotus bud, or the lotus-bud jewelry depicted in Greek sculpture and vases. As E. Russman, in Hapshepsut 2005, p. 45, proposes for the Egyptian Eighteenth Dynasty images, the symbolism may have been thought especially apt for an unfurled young life. On the symbolism of the lotus-blossom jewelry worn by Phrasikleia, a funereal archaic marble kore, see M. Stieber, The Poetics of Appearance in the Attic Korai (Austin, Texas, 2004); and R. Higgins, The Aegina Treasure: An Archaeological Mystery (London, 1979).

  5. British Museum GR 1850.2–27.15. On the dress, see Bonfante 2003, p. 223, n. 31; Haynes 2000, p. 154; Haynes 1985, pp. 252–53, no. 21; and Roncalli 1998 (see cat. no. 1, n. 22). Bonfante asks a question (p. 223, n. 31): “The bust is wearing a necklace and tight belt: is it naked or dressed in a ‘transparent’ linen chiton?”

  6. Strong 1966, pp. 66–67, no. 43, pl. XIX.

  7. Philadelphia, University of Pennsylvania, Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology MS 2536: Turfa 2005, pp. 226–27, no. 242; and Warden 1994, pp. 134–43, no. 3, figs. 13.7–13.9.

  8. Seated female figure, Ancona, Museo Archeologico Nazionale 4417 (from Pianello di Castelbellino): Rocco 1999, pp. 50–51, cat. 36, pls. XXVIII–IX.

  9. Richardson 1983, pp. 44–47.

  10. The gypsum statue of a woman in the British Museum is GR 1850.2–27.1 (Sculpture D1). For a survey of the Chiusine sculptures, see Hus 1961; for the Casale Marittimo sculptures in Volterra, see, for example, Principi Guerrieri: La Necropoli etrusca di Casale Marittimo, exh. cat., ed. A. M. Esposito (Milan, 1999).

  11. For the related bucchero, see Berkin 2003, pp. 38–40, nos. 22–23, figs. 13–14, pl. 67 (his Type 1). For the related bucchero at the J. Paul Getty Museum: CVA, U.S.A. Fasc. 31, J. Paul Getty Museum, Malibu, Fasc. 6 (Malibu, 1996).

  12. For the temple locks, see Bonfante 2003, pp. 70–71, nn. 40–42. As she points out, the numerous spiral hair holders excavated from Etruscan graves indicate the long popularity of the fashion. Among them are gold rings with amber disks.

  13. For the bronzes from Brolio, see cat. no. 1, n. 9.

  14. For the Hermes Kriophoros bronzes in Boston, Museum of Fine Arts (the larger is 99.489, H. L. Pierce Fund, and the smaller, 1904.6), see M. True in Kozloff and Mitten 1988, pp. 77–85, with references to the related bronzes: the Hermes Kriophoros from the Stathathos collection (unnumbered); the Hermes from Ithome (Athens, National Archaeological Museum 7539); the Hermes from Andritsaina (Athens, National Archaeological Museum 12347); the two Arcadians (Berlin, Staatliche Museen 30552 and 10781); and the Hermes Kriophoros in New York (Metropolitan Museum of Art 1972.118.67, Bequest of Walter C. Baker).

  15. Providence, Rhode Island School of Design 20.056: D. G. Mitten, Classical Bronzes: Catalogue of the Classical Collection, Museum of Art, Rhode Island School of Design, Providence, Rhode Island (Providence, 1975), pp. 41–45, no. 12.

  16. Providence, Rhode Island School of Design 47.792: Mitten (n. 15, above), pp. 102–5, no. 29.

  17. For the ivory horse-tamer in Samos (Vathy Museum): B. Freyer-Schauenburg, Elfenbeine aus dem samischen Heraion: Figurliches, Gefässe und Siegel (Hamburg, 1996), pp. 26–28, pl. 3b (early sixth century); and Marangou 1969, p. 196.

  18. Magie d’ambra 2005, p. 116. The seated figure from Tolve is illustrated on p. 114.

  19. For a discussion of multiple goddesses under a single mantle, see G. Koch Harnack, Erotische Symbole: Lotosblüte and gemeinsamer Mantel auf antiken Vasen (Berlin, 1989); H. G. Buchholz, “Das Symbol des gemeinsamen Mantels,” Jdi 102 (1987): 155; B. M. Fridh-Haneson, Le manteau symbolique: étude sur les couples votifs en terre cuite assis sous un même manteau (Stockholm, 1983); E. Simon, Die griechischen Vasen (Munich, 1976), p. 53; K. Schauenburg, “Iliupersis auf einer hydria des Priamosmalers,” RM 71 (1964): 68–70; and M. Guarducci, “Due o più donne sotto un solo manto in una serie di vasi greci arcaici,” AM 53–54 (1928–29): 52–65. On the role of the common covering cloth and protection, see the far-reaching study of M. S. Gittinger, “Selected Batak Textiles: Technique and Function,” Textile Museum Journal 4, no. 2 (1975): 13–19.

  20. See the example published by E. Heinrich, Kleinfunde in den archäischen Tempelschichten in Uruk (Berlin, 1936), pl. 13c, referenced in Bonner 1954, p. 140.

  21. See the introduction for the subject of birds in amber; for a listing of amber waterfowl found in Italian and Greek sanctuaries and graves, see Mastrocinque 1991, pp. 65–88.

  22. For the bronze statuette in Cortona, Museo dell’Academia Etrusca 1571, see Richardson 1983, p. 339, figs. 800–802. (See also n. 5, above.) The bronze divinity in London from the Polledraran “Isis Tomb” at Vulci is British Museum GR 1850.2–27.15 (Bronze 434). Once a full statue, the fragment likely represents a native Italic deity, perhaps one of fertility, as the hand-on-the-breast gesture and the other hand holding a bird may indicate. “The horned bird was often depicted by the early peoples of Italy and north of the Alps, and may have had some significance in local cult worship”: http://www.britishmuseum.org/explore/highlights/highlight_objects/gr/b/bronze_bust_of_a_woman.aspx. Haynes 2000, p. 155, notes the supernatural bird’s Villanovan antecedents; the possible religious significance of bronze cup handles with images of a human figure flanked by birds and quadrupeds in the tombs at Bisenzio and elsewhere; and that birds associated with priestesses or goddesses (Atargatis, Artemis Ephesia, and Artemis Orthia) are known from Syria, Ephesus, Dodona, and Sparta.

    On the identity of ancient images of female deities with birds of prey, esp. Hittite, see J. Vorys Canby, “Falconry in Hittite Lands,” Journal of Near Eastern Studies 61 (2002): 161–202; and Ridgway 1977, p. 112, n. 35: “Several Phrygian statues of the Goddess Kubaba are characterized by the attribute of a raptor pressed against the chest, perhaps significantly with the left hand.” It has been pointed out that in hieroglyphic Hittite, a raptor is the second sign in Kubaba’s name (Expedition 6 [1964]: 28–32). Tanaquil understood the actions of raptors. She, “like most Etruscans, was expert in interpreting celestial prodigies and delighted at the omen” of an eagle snatching and replacing her husband’s cap as they entered Rome, presaging his own, the Tarquins,’ and Etruria’s future, as related by Livy (1.34ff).

  23. For the hydria from Grächwil (Bern, Historisches Museum 11620), see Die Hydria von Grächwil: Zur Funktion und Rezeption mediterraner Importe in Mitteleuropa im 6. und 5. Jahrhundert v. Chr.; Akten Internationales Kolloquium anlässlich des 150. Jahrestages der Entdeckung der Hydria von Grächwil, 12.–13. Oktober 2001, ed. M. A. Guggisberg (Bern, 2004); Stibbe 2000; C. Stibbe, “Exceptional Shapes and Decorations in Laconian Pottery,” in Sparta in Laconia: The Archaeology of a City and Its Countryside, eds. W. G. Cavanagh and S. E. C. Walker (London, 1998), pp. 72–73, with reference to his previous discussion of the work; and H. Jucker, “Altes und neues zur grächwiler Hydria,” in Zur griechischen Kunst: Hansjörg Bloesch zum 70. Geburtstage am 5. Juli 1972. = AntK Beiheft 9 (1973): 57–78.

  24. Among the earliest images of a bird atop the head (perhaps a bird hat) is the tiny eighth-century (possibly Vetulonian) amber in the Metropolitan Museum of Art (1992.11.14a, Purchase, Renée and Robert A. Belfer Philanthropic Fund Foundation, Patti Cadby Birch, and The Joseph Rosen Foundation Inc. Gifts, and Harris Brisbane Dick Fund, 1992). A significant parallel is the late-sixth-century necklace from Vulci (possibly); its nine pendants, made from sheet gold, are in the form of a crowned and necklaced bust of a female divinity with a resting duck on her head (Rome, Museo Nazionale Etrusco di Villa Giulia 53486): A. M. Moretti Sgubini, ed., La Collezione Augusto Castellani (Rome, 2000), pp. 180–81, no. 134, with references to comparanda in Hamburg and Munich. The bucchero oinochoe in Florence (Museo Archeologico Nazionale 3179), from Chiusi, may be another representation of the same divinity. The neck of the vase is made into the lower part of her head, the lid into a bird-topped hat; see World of the Etruscans 2001, pp. 28, 29, 95, no. 180. The handle of an unparalleled large bronze kyathos from Bisenzio (Florence, Museo Archeologico Nazionale 74913), of the later sixth century, has three figures represented on it, two different walking and greeting figures on each side of the handle, and a third at the apex, whose position is difficult to understand: she may be interpreted as supported by one figure on the inside of the handle (whose eyes are cast downward) or as seated at the apex of the handle. The divinity (for so must she be) wears a conically shaped hat under a veil, a chiton, and boots, and holds what looks like a small raptor on her right hand; see World of the Etruscans 2001, pp. 26, 91, no. 165.

  25. Canby 2002 (see n. 22, above); and Marangou 1969.

  26. Etruscan, first quarter of the fifth century: H. B. Walters, Catalogue of Bronzes, Greek, Roman and Etruscan, in the Department of Greek and Roman Antiquities, British Museum (London, 1899), no. 551; Richter 1968, p. 108, no. 203, fig. 644.

  27. B. M. Fridh-Haneson, “Votive Terracottas from Italy: Types and Problems,” in Gifts for the Gods, eds. T. Linders and G. Nordquist (Symposium: Gifts to the Gods, Uppsala, 1985) = Boreas 15 (1985): 67–75; see also Fridh-Haneson’s 1983 study (n. 19, above), p. 27ff.

  28. On the symbolism of the waterbird, see the introduction, n. 194.

  29. Jannot 2005, p. 147.

Cat. 2, Pendant: Female Holding a Child (Kourotrophos) with Bird

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. Ancient Carved Ambers in the J. Paul Getty Museum. Los Angeles: Getty P, 2012. museumcatalogues.getty.edu. Web. 15 Dec. 2018.


. In Ancient Carved Ambers in the J. Paul Getty Museum, last modified August 1, 2012, accessed 15 Dec. 2018. Los Angeles: Getty Publications, 2012. museumcatalogues.getty.edu/amber/.

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