Figurines Data

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ID 1066
Images No image in database
Grid Ref TM2654
Project type Metal detector
County Suffolk
Site Dallinghoo
Site Type Unknown
Location Type Unknown
Context Unknown
Context Quality 1
Object Period 0
Material Bronze
Location Returned to finder
Ref No SF8669
Form Figurine
Type Animal
Name Dog
Bearded No
Standing/Seated Standing
Clothed No
Drapery No
Condition Slightly corroded
Classical 0
Photo Yes
Illustration Yes
Height 15.00
Length 60.00
References PAS database.
[Link to Bibliography]
Description Cast copper-alloy figurine, now rather corroded, in the shape of an elongated dog carrying a smaller animal in its mouth. The dog has a long straight body and neck in line with each other, a long head, short tapering legs, genitalia, and the broken stub of a tail. The body and neck are cylindrical in cross-section, varying in diameter; the body is narrowest (4-5 mm diameter) just before the junction with the back legs, widens at the shoulders, and narrows again in the middle of the thick neck. There is a distinct step between the body and the back legs; these are formed from a Ushape with the stub of tail at the top, a horizontal groove below, and the circular-section legs dividing beneath. There are no feet surviving, and due to the corrosion it is hard to tell whether the legs survive to anything like their original length. An off-centre penis projects from between the legs; there is a stub or casting flaw just to one side of this, in the centre, and it is possible that something is missing here. The body swells smoothly to the shoulders, with no distinct step. The front legs are similar to the rear legs, with no surviving feet, and one is now a little bent. The total height of the dog at the back legs is 15 mm, and at the front legs is 14 mm. The head has slightly backwards-pointing rounded ears, each with a central groove, and rounded bumps for eyes. There is a groove running down the muzzle, and dots for the nostrils. The open jaws grasp a smaller animal around its middle, with two legs and a tail behind and two shorter front legs and a head in front. As the smaller animal is not being held by the scruff of the neck, it seems unlikely that it is a puppy; as this is clearly not a bitch and puppy, maybe it is a wolf and lamb. The two animals are similar in design, with stiff straight bodies (although the smaller one has dot instead of relief eyes) but the smaller animal is much less elongated and more natural-looking than the larger one. The head of the large animal is quite big and heavy, and together with the weight of the smaller animal results in the figurine not being able to stand upright on all four feet; the head tips forwards. It does sit upright happily on its back legs, but would not have been able to do this prior to the loss of the tail. The total surviving length is 60 mm and the length of the smaller animal is 23 mm. No close parallel has yet been found, but there are other three-dimensional dogs known from Tierfibeln (animal brooches) of the Hallstatt culture in central Europe, dated to the 5th century BC (e.g. Hattatt no. 1445), and it has been suggested that the off-centre penis may in fact be part of a brooch spring. The object has been examined in the British Museum by J. D. Hill, however, who thinks it unlikely to be Iron Age; it may possibly be Roman, and perhaps a child's toy (PAS).
PAS id SF8669


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Last updated: Wed Feb 29 2012