Gundestrup and Thracia
- Students of Thracian art have been especially interested
in the Gundestrup cauldron. They have attempted to
refine the dating and extending the range of cultural
materials to which the cauldron was compared.
The conclusion was that the cauldron had been made either
in Transsylvania or the adjacent lower Danube basin. These
regions were in a flux in the late Iron Age. There was for instance
"Celtic" raiding around 280 BC and the establishment of the
kingdom of Tylis in what is today Bulgaria. After the cauldron was
made Germanic raids took place. It was believed that Goths, Celts,
Thracians had played a role in the history of the cauldron.
Phaleras or bridle decorations, that were used to repair the cauldron
were also in use by the Sarmatians and the similarities between the Gundestrup
one and those found in the lower Don area are striking. The "elephant and
castle" phalera is similar to two phaleras from a North Pakistani
site near Rawalpindi.
One Rawalpindi phalera depicts a woman with her hair in tresses
and a bird perched above each shoulder. This is Hariti, the protectress
of children. Similar figures can be found on Sarmatian metalwork
in the lower Don basin, a region also influenced by northern India.
More to follow.