Judahite Pillar Figurine with Mold-made Head

Iron Age IIB–IIC, 8th–7th Century BCE


Terra-cotta pillar figurines are found throughout the biblical territory of Judah and date to the eighth to seventh centuries BCE. Most were decorated with a white background layer and one or more colors (red, yellow, black) for stripes, jewelry, eyes, and hair. They usually have almond-shaped eyes and a hairstyle with tightly twisted curls, similar to representations of Egyptian wigs. This example, from Lachish, 7 inches (18 cm) high, has a stylized curly hairdo. The face seems to present a quirky smile, a long thin nose, and eyes and brow ridges marked by raised lines.


The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Gift of Harris D. and H. Dunscombe Colt, 1934. www.metmuseum.org. CC0 1.0 Universal, https://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/

Published in: The Posen Library of Jewish Culture and Civilization, vol. 1.

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