Belt buckle and lappet fittings

This silver-gilt buckle ends in a floral form. A set of gold lappet fittings consists of an end tab, eleven short ornaments, and twenty-two long ornaments. Each fitting is approximately oval in shape and decorated with two rows of continuous dots enclosing a vine-scroll pattern. On the front of each long ornament and the end tab is a narrow band perforated for attachment to a leather belt.

Historical period(s)
Sasanian period, 7th century
Medium
Silver and gilt (buckle) and gold
Geography
Iran
Credit Line
Gift of Arthur M. Sackler
Collection
Arthur M. Sackler Gallery
Accession Number
S1987.201a-ii
On View Location
Currently not on view
Classification(s)
Jewelry and Ornament, Metalwork
Type

Buckle and belt ornaments

Keywords
chasing, flower, gilding, hammering, Iran, repousse, Sasanian period (ca. 224 - 651), WWII-era provenance
Provenance
Provenance research underway.
Description

This silver-gilt buckle ends in a floral form. A set of gold lappet fittings consists of an end tab, eleven short ornaments, and twenty-two long ornaments. Each fitting is approximately oval in shape and decorated with two rows of continuous dots enclosing a vine-scroll pattern. On the front of each long ornament and the end tab is a narrow band perforated for attachment to a leather belt.

Label

This group of ornamented gold fittings would have covered lappets made of some other material, perhaps wood or leather, worn suspended from a belt.  Several of these lappet fittings, in fact, preserved bits of leather.  Belts of this type are Central Asian in origin and are frequently depicted there in wall paintings and other representations.

Published References
  • Ann C. Gunter, Paul Jett. Ancient Iranian Metalwork in the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery and the Freer Gallery of Art. Washington and Mainz, Germany, 1992. cat. 42, pp. 48, 220-21.
  • et al. Asian Art in the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery: The Inaugural Gift. Washington, 1987. cat. 26b, p. 56.
  • Persia: Ancient Iran and the Classical World. Exh. cat. Los Angeles, CA, April 26, 2022. p. 345, fig. 176.
Collection Area(s)
Ancient Near Eastern Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
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