Discs pectoral. The prestige of a Celtiberian Gull

Pectoral de Aguilar de Anguita Pulse para ampliar Pectoral de Aguilar de Anguita. Sala 14, vitrina 14.14.

Protohistory. Celtic peoplesSalto de línea

The preferred funerary ritual among the Celtic peoples was cremation. The cremated remains of the deceased were placed in a vessel that served as a funerary urn and buried in a pit with the grave goods. The grave was then covered with a tumulus or surrounded by stone slabs and marked by a stela. If the deceased was a warrior, his weapons would be ritually decommissioned, burned and buried with him. There are farmers' tombs, identified by agricultural instruments found in their graves and certain burials could only have belonged to a chieftain given the quantity and quality of the grave goods. This is the case of these burial offerings from Aguilar de Anguita (Guadalajara), consisting of offensive and defensive weapons, two horse bits—one for training and another for riding—and sundry bronze clothing accessories, such as a large disc pectoral, a helmet, a belt buckle and a fibula.

The pectoral, dated from the 5th century to the beginning of the 4th century BC, consists of two bronze discs, one for the chest and one for the back, with various discoid and oval plates suspended from chains. Both the discs and the plates are decorated with a repoussé design of concentric circles and small incised lines, which can be interpreted as patterns with astral symbolism that may have been intended to protect the wearer. The pectoral probably belonged to a Celtiberian chieftain, who would have worn it over a leather shirt to advertise his exalted social status at ceremonies and celebrations. It was deposited in his grave along with his offensive and defensive weapons, the majority made of iron, and various clothing accessories. Some of these superbly crafted objects are clearly related to the Iberian world.