Astraea and Diana on a chariot drawn by dogs (Diana sul carro trainato da cani) - Lorenzo Costa the Younger
The Hall of the Zodiac, Ducal Palace, Mantua

2300 Year Old Scythian Chariot

Pazyryk Culture, c. 5th-4th century BC, found in the Fifth Pazyryk mound, Big Ulagan, Pazyryk valley, Gorny Altai, Russia. Made of leather and wood.

The large chariot is one of the most spectacular finds of the Fifth Pazyryk mound. It’s made of birch, and its body consists of three frames with interconnected columns and carved leather straps forming a platform on which stands a gazebo canopy. The huge wheels have 34 spokes which were strengthened by glued birch bark. This chariot was collapsible so it could be carried instead of being pulled when going over treacherous terrain, such as mountains.

The Pazyryk Culture is a Scythian Iron Age archaeological culture (c. 6th to 3rd centuries BC) identified by excavated artifacts and mummified humans found in the Siberian permafrost, in the Altay Mountains, Kazakhstan and nearby Mongolia (map). 

Rare Sumerian Chariot Figurine, 3rd-2nd ML BC

A ceramic model of a chariot comprising an advancing horse with bridle and reins, small two-wheeled vehicle with lobes to the wheels and yoke, female rider with full skirt and carefully dressed hair.

Representations of war chariots in Sumerian art are fairly rare, and certainly so of models in the round; a comparable piece to this example, but made in copper, was found at Tell Agrab in Iraq and dates to c. 2700 BC. The most well known images of war chariots come from the famous “Standard of Ur” now in the British Museum.


Proto-Hittite Chariot with Oxen, c. 1800- 1500 BC

This bronze sculptural ensemble representing a pair of oxen drawing a cart was created by the predecessors of the Hittites, making this group approximately 4,000 years old. The chariot is pulled by two solid-cast oxen with four, flat disc wheels. The rectangular cart with looped balustrades. This is a very rare ensemble created by one of the oldest cultures of the Levant.

While not much is known about this culture, prior to a few archaeological discoveries, the only source of information about the Hittites was the Old Testament. According to the Book of Kings, the Hittites supplied the Israelites with chariots (later and more sophisticated carts if you will), horses, and cedar, and were friendly with and allied to Abraham in the Book of Genesis.