The “Gillet” Amlash Terracotta Goddess

Greek, Near Eastern · Amlash, ca. 1100-900 B.C.



H: 21 cm (8.2 in)





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A superb and highly stylized human figure with short elephantine legs, bulbous buttocks, and small conical breasts flanked by the rudimentary arms. The flat, masklike face has a prominent nose merging into the arched eyebrows, prominent forehead, pierced ears, and stippled conical coiffure. There are ribbed folds on the neck marked by the incision lines, probably indicating a necklace. Very likely, the woman is wearing a garment with embroidery: a stippled pattern at the neck is connected to a belt by a single vertical line falling between her breasts (the line is reflected on the back). The actual gold crescentic earrings were given to the image suggesting that it represents a deity. One of the earrings is engraved with chevron on cross-hatched panels; the other is engraved with parallel zigzag lines between hatched borders.


Art market, prior to 1972;

Ex- Charles Gillet (1879-1972) collection; Lausanne, Switzerland;

thence by descent, Marion Schuster (1902-1982) collection, Lausanne, Switzerland;

Sotheby’s New York, 7 December 2001, lot 156;

The Gilbert collection, Cambridge, Massachusetts, acquired in New York, 7 December 2001.


Sotheby’s New York, 7 December 2001, lot 156


Salon Art + Design, Park Avenue Armory, November 2019