Syrian / Gravestone with funerary banquet / 2nd-3rd century A.D.Syrian
Gravestone with funerary banquet
2nd-3rd century A.D.

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Creator Nationality: Asian; Middle Eastern; Syrian
Creator Name-CRT: Syrian
Title: Gravestone with funerary banquet
View: Full View
Creation Start Date: 100
Creation End Date: 299
Creation Date: 2nd-3rd century A.D.
Object Type: Sculpture
Materials and Techniques: Limestone
Dimensions: H. 20.2 in. (51.4 cm)
AMICA Contributor: The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Owner Location: New York, New York, USA
ID Number: 02.29.1
Credit Line: Purchase, 1902

In the mid-first century A.D., Palmyra, a wealthy and elegant Syrian city located along the caravan routes linking the Parthian Near East with the Mediterranean ports of Roman Syria and Phoenicia, came under Roman control. During the following period of great prosperity, the Aramaean citizens of Palmyra adopted customs and modes of dress from both the Iranian Parthian world to the east and the Graeco-Roman west.

Palmyrenes constructed a series of large-scale funerary monuments. These structures, some of which were below ground, had interior walls that were cut away or constructed to form burial compartments in which the deceased, extended at full length, was placed. Limestone slabs with human busts in high relief sealed the rectangular openings of the compartments. These reliefs represented the 'personality' or 'soul' of the person interred and formed part of the wall decoration inside the tomb chamber. A banquet scene as depicted on this relief would have been displayed in a family tomb rather than that of an individual.

AMICA ID: MMA_.02.29.1
AMICA Library Year: 2000
Media Metadata Rights: Copyright The Metropolitan Museum of Art

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