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A Leaping Stag in a Landscape
Cylinder seal and impression
Mesopotamia, Middle Assyrian period
(ca. 13th century B.C.)
30 x 10 mm
Seal no. 601
See CORSAIR catalog record for this item »
The artist who carved this stag—its antlered head proudly
held high, its foreleg poised to land—must have been familiar
with the extraordinary grace and dignity of this animal,
whose name, lulimu, could also mean "ruler" or "prince."
The significance of the scene is unknown; however, an echo
of its meaning is found in a biblical text from the Song of
Solomon (2:8–9), in which the bride speaks of her bridegroom:
"The voice of my beloved! Behold, he cometh leaping upon
the mountains, skipping upon the hills. My beloved is like
a roe or a young hart."
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