A large terracotta plaque with relief decoration showing a naked goddess, probably Ishtar, with wings and bird claws for feet.
The Queen of the Night Relief (The Burney Relief) by Unknown Artist, c. 18001750 BC
© British Museum
- Baked straw-tempered clay with traces of red, blank and white paint
- 49.5 x 36 x 4.8 cm
- Art Fund grant:
- £200,000 ( Total: £1,500,000)
- Acquired in:
- Mr Goro Sakamoto
She wears a horned headdress and holds a rod and ring in each of her raised hands. She is standing on a pair of lions flanked by two standing owls. There are traces of paint on the relief indicating it was originally painted. This work was acquired with assistance from the Wolfson Foundation.
Probably from Babylonia (southern Iraq); Selim Homsy and Co, London, 1920s; Sidney Burney, 1936; Colonel Norman Colville of Launceston, Cornwall until 1974; Sotheby's; Mr Goro Sakamoto; on loan to the British Museum 1976-1991, then 1999 onwards.