Figurines Data

Search again | Database help

ID 887
Images No image in database
Grid Ref SU3740
Project type Metal detector
County Hampshire
Site Fullerton
Site Type Villa
Location Type Unknown
Context Unknown
Context Quality 1
Object Period 0
Material Bronze
Import Yes
Location Unknown
Ref No HAMP-453C46
Form Figurine
Type Animal
Name Crocodile
Bearded No
Clothed No
Drapery No
Condition Good
Classical 1
Quality Classical 3
Photo Yes
Illustration Yes
Height 0.00
Length 56.60
References Worrell 2007, 338-9, fig. 37; Webley 2008, 117-8, figs. 3.87 and 88
[Link to Bibliography]
Description A zoomorphic figurine in the form of a crocodile cast in copper alloy. The animal is very well moulded with its neck and head, and tail, rising upwards from a flat underbelly. The tail tapers as it curves, reaching a maximum height of 27.7mm above the flat underside. The legs are bent back on themselves and each foot terminates in three toes. The upper surface of the body is decorated to render the animal's leathery skin. Uppermost are two longitudinal grooves crossed by numerous transverse grooves to create a field of irregular squares and rectangles, three across. The flanks and legs have been decorated using a punched circular pattern; again, the decoration is not quite symmetrical. The raised head tapers to a snout. Teeth are delineated in a open jaw and the eyes are raised mouldings. The greyer colour of the underside of the body suggests that the figurine might have been soldered to another surface, perhaps as part of a scene; otherwise it does function as a standalone piece. The artefact generally has a dull green patina, with areas of brighter corrosion on the head, tail and flanks; some of these latter have spots of orange-brown corrosion product showing through. The rendering of the head in particular (it is quite small, with its pointy snout) suggests a slight lack of familiarity with crocodilia; it is supposed that a more accurate rendering would be within the ken of the maker given how well made the artefact is overall. The slight irregularities within the decoration have already been noted. These factors suggest that this object has a certain antiquity, and is most likely to be of Roman date. The Romans are known to have worshipped the Egyptian crocodile god Sobek (who was inextricably linked with the River Nile).(Webley).
PAS id HAMP-453C46


© Internet Archaeology/Authors URL:
Last updated: Wed Feb 29 2012