Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Statuette of a female

Iron Age II
ca. early 1st millennium B.C.
Northwestern Iran, Caspian region
H. 31.3 cm
Credit Line:
Harris Brisbane Dick Fund, 1964
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 404
Some of the most elaborate representations of females in the art of the ancient Near East are images of divine and cult figures whose association with certain aspects of life made them essential to the welfare of humanity. Fertility, procreation, and the growth of crops and livestock were among the basic concepts identified with female divinities. Representations of nude females in clay, stone, and metal are the simplest and most obvious expression of these concepts, and such figures appear throughout antiquity in many regions.

This striking example in clay from the South Caspian region of northwestern Iran is hollow and probably served as a cult vessel as well as a sacred image.

#7009. Statuette of a female
: / 
For Audio Guide tours and information, visit
Acquired by the Museum in 1964, purchased from Nuri Farhadi and Habib Anavian, New York.

“Profil du Metropolitan Museum of Art de New York,” Galerie des Beaux-Arts, Bordeaux, France, May 15–September 1, 1981.

“5000 Years of Art from the Collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art,” San Diego Museum of Art, Krannert Art Museum, Champaign, Illinois, The Fine Arts Museum of the South, Mobile, Midland Center for the Arts, Midland, Michigan, The Arkansas Arts Center, Little Rock, 1981–1982.

Crawford, Vaughn E. 1964. The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin 23 (2), Ninety-Fourth Annual Report of The Trustees for The Fiscal Year 1963-1964 (Oct., 1964), p. 56.

Galerie des Beaux-Arts, Bordeaux. 1981. Profil du Metropolitan Museum of Art de New York: de Ramsès à Picasso, exh. cat., no. 18, p. 45.

Metropolitan Museum of Art. 1981. 5000 Years of Art from the Collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, exh. cat. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, no. 3.

Harper, Prudence O. et al. 1984. "Ancient Near Eastern Art." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin 41 (4), Spring 1984, p. 24, fig. 25.
Related Objects

Statuette of a man with an oryx, a monkey, and a leopard skin

Date: ca. 8th century B.C. Medium: Ivory Accession: 60.145.11 On view in:Gallery 400

Spouted jar

Date: ca. 9th century B.C. Medium: Ceramic Accession: 60.20.15 On view in:Gallery 404

Relief: two servants bearing food and drink

Date: ca. 358–338 B.C. Medium: Limestone Accession: 34.158 On view in:Gallery 405

Top for standard

Date: ca. 8th century B.C. Medium: Bronze Accession: 1996.82.1 On view in:Gallery 404

Vessel terminating in the forepart of a fantastic leonine creature

Date: ca. 5th century B.C. Medium: Gold Accession: 54.3.3 On view in:Gallery 405