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Furniture inlay: striding sphinx

Furniture inlay: striding sphinx

Furniture inlay: striding sphinx

Ivory

L: 7.5; W: 7 cm

IAA:

1933-2572

Archaeology/Israelite & Persian Periods

Ivory was as highly valued as gold or silver, and this plaque probably once decorated sumptuous wooden furniture in the palace of the northern Israelite kings in Samaria. The "ivory palace" that King Ahab built in Samaria is mentioned in the Bible (I Kings 22:39). To the prophet Amos, writing a century later, "ivory beds" symbolized the corrupt society of the Samarian aristocracy that he so abhorred (Amos 6:4).

From the Israel Museum publications:

The Israel Museum, Publisher: Harry N. Abrams, Inc., 2005