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Ancient Mesopotamia
Mesopotamia
Assyria Nineveh
Arslan Tash Til Barsip
Iran Palace of Darius
Phoenicia Arabia Palmyra
Syrian coast
Ougarit Byblos




   
Decorated Vase
 
MAO 426
 
 
5th-6th Century AD
Reshy, Dailaman province (Iran)
 
Gilded silver
 
 
Sully room 16 showcase 5
 
 
 
This rounded, egg-shaped bottle,
decorated with four dancers and
a ring of beads around the neck,
 
is characteristic of Sassanid
precious metalwork.
 
The art of dance goes back a very long way. The deliverance of the Israelites at the Red Sea, and Jephthah, David and Saul’s victorious return from battle were celebrated by song and dance (Exodus 15:20; Judges 11:34), more often than not performed by women. When the ark of the alliance arrived in Jerusalem, King David expressed his emotion “David was dancing around with all his power” before God - 2 Samuel 6:14.
 
The Triumpf of David  1630   

Matteo ROSSELLI      inv 592

 

 
The biblical subject (First Book of Samuel, 18, 6-7) shows the
triumph of David after his
victory over the giant Goliath:
 
female musicians celebrate while
he returns triumphant to Jerusalem.
 
Dance also took on a religious significance in pagan nations. The Canaanites performed fertility dances around their idols and sacred poles.
 
In Eli’s time, Baal’s priests indulged in extravagant and frenzied dances, during which “they kept limping around the altar” (1 Kings 18:26). Other translations say that they “danced with a hop” (Osty) or that they “danced with bended leg” (Lienart). The Israelites also partook in a form of pagan dance before the golden calf. - Exodus 32:19.
 
 
 
 
 

 





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