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12 apostles, great ocean road, australia

Central Asian Bronze Sword, 1200-800 BC

From the Caspian Sea region. A unique bronze short sword with double terminals that look like budding long-petaled flowers, a very rare style. This weapon does not bear marks of having been repeatedly sharpened for use so it was probably made specifically to accompany a warrior in death as grave goods.

The area around the Caspian Sea, particularly on its southeast coast, and into modern day Iran, Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, and Baluchistan (western Pakistan), was a cultural hotbed during this time period. The map of archaeological finds from there is studded with urban centers, large burial mounds, and technological and metallurgical innovation - especially in the production of amazing bronze artifacts, probably with influence from the innovative bronze (and later iron) artisans in Luristan (modern day northwestern Iran). People - both men and women - went to their graves with beautiful, well-made weapons like this one that were more than likely a sign of high status.