An Astonishingly Small Stone Carving That Has the Power to Change Art History



More than two years ago researchers from the University of Cincinnati unearthed a 3,500-year-old tomb in the southwest of Greece. The tomb belonged to a Bronze Age warrior nicknamed the “Griffin Warrior”. And contained many treasures, such as four gold signet rings, that have challenged previous notions about the origins of Greek civilization.

images courtesy of The Department of Classics, University of Cincinnati
Perhaps one of the most important and visually captivating finds from the tomb occurred a full year after its discovery. Researchers uncovered a carved sealstone no larger than an inch and a half wide. The “Pylos Combat Agate” meticulously displays two warriors engaged in battle with bodies strewn at their feet, with some details less than a millimeter wide.

The carving is perhaps most astonishing. It predates artistic skills that were not associated with Greek civilization for another millennium.

In a testament to the anonymous artist’s skills, it’s also worthy to note that magnifying glasses were not believed to be used for another thousand years. This ability and sophistication show that the inhabitants of the area were creating art. With an interest and knowledge of representational art not previously imagined.
Source

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An Astonishingly Small Stone Carving That Has the Power to Change Art History

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