N.inv. Pigorini/ Serie W
The flat-based nodule 71976/ HT Wa 1547 bears a seal impression representing “two stylized men protected by the body-shield” (Alberti et alii 2013,11).
The nodule bears one Linear A sign.
Apparently, this sign was used with different meanings. It might refer to a commodity (i.e. an agricultural or textile item), to a specific personnel category or to sums and quantities (Negri 2002-2003, 100; Montecchi 2019, 282).
This single hole hanging nodule was discovered in the North-West Quarter, between the Room 13, also known as “Stanza dei Sigilli”, and the Portico 11, like most of the cretulae, probably fallen from the upper floor, which collapsed in the fire that destroyed the Villa (Halbherr 1903, 30; Levi 1925, 73; for the provenance of administrative documents See Militello 1988, 1992, 2001, 2011).
Measures 1.9 cm x 2.0 cm x 1.4 cm.
Scribe Wa 89
The seal impression HT 116 recurs 17 times, one at the Pigorini Museum. (Del Freo 2002-2003,67).
The motif represents two stylized figures with eight -shape body shields. On both sides of the figures two vertical lines are visible and Levi, because of their presence, interpreted the figures not as warriors, but as a representation of a xoanon (Levi 1925-1926, 124). In the upper part of the motif some strokes departing from the shields can be intepreted as arms; some others, crossing above the heads, as swords. (Del Freo 2002-2003, 68).
The eight-shape shield protected the warrior from head to toe, hanging from one shoulder – the left, according to some scholars, or the right (Greco 2006, 274) with a leather strap (τελαμών in Ancient Greek); it was a motif widespread during LM IB, not only in the glyptic, where it occur isolated or associated with a double ax or with men wearing a fringe cloak (Molloy 2012, 104), but it occurs also in frescoes and stucco decorations, such as in the “Shield Frescoes” of Tiryns, dated to LH IIIB, or in the frescoes from Knossos, Thera, Mycenae, Pylos, and Thebes, slightly earlier (Blakolmer 2012, 84). The use of this shield as a defensive weapon, and as a cult symbol – it had also a strong magic/apotropaic value -, peaked in the LH II, and then continued to be an important symbol in the iconography and the myth.
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