Stamp-cylinder seal ("the Tyszkiewicz seal")

Near Eastern, Anatolian, Hittite
1650–1200 B.C.


Overall: 5.8 x 2.2 cm (2 5/16 x 7/8 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Hematite handle on cylinder of intaglio gem

On View

Ancient Near East Gallery (Gallery 110)


The Ancient World



Mythological scenes between bands of spiral ornament. An enthroned god sits amidst various cult objects before a mountain in which a human figure is buried under the god’s throne, perhaps a representation of the Underworld. Five deities approach him, one with two faces. On the right another god slays a fallen enemy, while two others burn the two-faced god on a flaming pyre. Underneath the pyre is again a buried body.


By 1898, Count Michel Tyszkiewicz Collection (sale: Paris, Hotel des Commissaires-Priseurs, 9 rue Drouot, Paris, June 8-10, 1898, Collection d'antiquités du Comte Michel Tyszkiewicz, cat. by W. Froehner, no. 241, pp. 80-81, pl. XXVII, said to have been found on Cyprus); 1898, E. P. Warren (bought at Tyszkiewicz sale); 1898; purchased by MFA from E. P. Warren.
(Accession Date: October 21, 1880)

Credit Line

Henry Lillie Pierce Fund