Lady of Baza

Dama de Baza Pulse para ampliar Dama de Baza. Sala 11, vitrina 10.14

An exceptional cinerary urn

The famous piece called the Lady of Baza is an anthropomorphic cinerary urn, skilfully carved out of limestone by an Iberian sculptor during first middle of 4th century BC. It represents an important woman in Iberian society. The individualised facial features seem to portray a specific person, richly garbed in a tunic and cloak and bedecked with ostentatious jewellery that denotes an eastern influence. She is seated on a throne which has a cavity under the seat where the cremated remains of the dead woman were found.

This sculpture was discovered while excavating an underground tomb in the Iberian necropolis at Baza, the ancient city of Basti, in Granada. This same tomb also yielded grave goods consisting of luxury pottery pieces and four sets of weapons and armour, possible souvenirs of the mock battles that may have been staged as part of her funeral rites in a manner befitting a heroic warrior. The use of certain divine symbols, like the winged attachments to the back of the throne and the bird held in her hand, underscore the connection between the sphere of the gods and this powerful woman, probably recognised by her clan as the great ancestress and founder of their aristocratic bloodline.