Object Description

A heavy spherical Egyptian breccia stone macehead, pierced longitudinally for attachment to a wooden shaft. Maceheads of this shape have been found in Naqada I (4400 – 3500 BC) tombs and were later replaced by piriform maceheads. This item comes mounted on a custom wooden stand.

Maces were extensively used in Egypt and neighbouring Canaan from the middle of the 4th millennium BC to the middle of the 3rd. Using the mace required a rather great physical force; such weapons would have been slung around in battle to injure the enemy. In many places, even after its usage was abandoned by the military, it remained a symbol of power for the rulers. For instance, Karnak reliefs, Seti I was depicted on foot wielding a mace, smiting his enemies. They are common in Predynastic and Early Dynastic graves but their small size suggests a ritual or symbolic purpose rather than practical use.

Provenance: Ex Mayfair, London antiquities dealer.

Reference: Christie’s sale 2605, lot 102.
Christie’s sale 3403, lot 23.

Period: Predynastic Period, 4400-3500 BC (Naqada I)

Object Condition

Very fine, intact, with minor chipping to the top and bottom apertures.

Object Classification

  • material
  • dimensions
    W:5.4 x H:3.9; with stand: 11.7 centimeters

Dealer Opening Times

By appointment only.

Dealer Contact

+44 (0)208 364 4565

Dealer Location

The Gallery
Trent Park Equestrian Centre
Eastpole Farm House, Bramley Road
Oakwood, N14 4UW, United Kingdom


St James's Ancient Art
10 Charles II Street, Ground Floor
St James