Bronze Age zebu bull


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ITEMZebu bull
CULTUREBronze Age, Indus Valley
PERIOD3000 – 2000 B.C
DIMENSIONS110 mm x 145 mm
CONDITIONGood condition
PROVENANCEEx Japanese private collection (deceased), acquired before 1970

The Indus Valley Civilisation was an important Bronze Age culture which arose in c. 3300 BC and lasted until c. 1300, though its heyday, to which this ceramic vessel belongs, was in the 3rd millennium BC. The bull, with its hump and powerful horns, is a recurring motif in the Indus Valley, appearing on painted pottery like this example but also on figurines and stamps. The animal may represent the leader of a herd, who is able to protect his followers, or it could be a reflection of the bull’s importance in religious sacrifice.