MAIASP. 2019. No. 11

S.A. Yatsenko (Moscow, Russia)


DOI: 10.24411/2713-2021-2019-00002 

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Pages: 3372

Pectorals of the Iranian World in the 7th c. BCE the 7th c. CE were very rare costume accessories, usually made of gold. Many of them had no décor. They are almost not represented in the visual arts and are not mentioned in written sources. The ritual value of pectorals is demonstrated by rites with them and their owners (placing them separately from the dead body, as if hanging over him; remove all the lower pendants; finding graves with them on the edge of the necropolises etc.). There are differences in the subjects between women (12 rows of hoofs) and men (torment of large animals or fighting, two symmetrical pairs three men). The original impulse came from the Bronze Age NW China and since the 7th c. BCE from Tuva, in the second half of the 6th c. BCE they appear in the Achaemenian Empire and since the mid. 5th c. BCE in European Scythia. In the western regions they were influenced by the peculiarities of the Urartu pectorals. Their purpose was probably different for different peoples (in Tuva the symbols of the dominant clans, in Iran the royal gifts to officials, in Scythia the sacred attributes with the image of Universe model). The last area of their usage until recently was the Eastern Hindukush where Pashtun and Dardic peoples preserved the part of traditions of the ancient Iranians in the décor of pectorals.

Key words: pectorals, ancient Iranian World, stages of distribution, specificity of regional usage, ritual and social functions, gender difference, rites with pectorals.

Received December 12, 2019

Accepted for publication December 29, 2019

About the author:

Yatsenko Sergey Aleksandrovich (Moscow, Russia). Dr. Habil., Professor, Russian State University for the Humanities