Through January 4, 2015
The Metropolitan Museum of Art
New York, New York
Stretching from modern Iraq to the Mediterranean Sea, the Assyrian empire was the largest in the world during the eighth and seventh centuries B.C.E. The Assyrian monarchs Tiglath-pileser, Shalmaneser and Sennacherib are well known from the Biblical accounts (2 Kings 15–18); now artifacts from this vast empire may be seen in the exhibit Assyria to Iberia at the Dawn of the Classical Age at The Met in New York. Displaying more than 250 objects—from jewelry, ivories and intricate metalwork to monumental sculptures and wall reliefs—the exhibit explores the incredible influence and reach of the Assyrian empire.
The exhibit features items from the Assyrian homeland—such as the ninth- or eighth-century B.C.E. ivory plaque with a striding sphinx (above) from the Assyrian site of Nimrud (ancient Kalhu)—and also artifacts from conquered lands and peoples who adapted Assyrian imagery and techniques into their assemblages, typically as luxury wares. Phoenicia is another focus of the exhibit: While paying tribute to the Assyrian empire, the Phoenicians established an immense trade network across the Mediterranean and even founded colonies in North Africa such as Carthage, further extending the reach of the Assyrian empire.
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