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Art From Us MUSEUM GUIDE : The Metropolitan Museum of Art : Gallery 405

The MET : Gallery 405 : From the Achaemenid to the Sasanian Empire : The Ancient Near East and Silk Road Contacts

Art From Us, Museum Guide #603

Art From Us presents a must-see Museum Guide daily, where we showcase specific artworks in specific museums – from across the globe. Today, for Art From Us, Museum Guide #603 the spotlight is on the Metropolitan Museum of Art (the MET) NY’s Gallery 405. Showcasing a collection from the Achaemenid to the Sasanian Empire: The Ancient Near East and Silk Road Contacts ca. 559 B.C.–A.D. 651.

The three works in focus are :

  1. Plaque with Horned Lion-Griffins, ca. 6th – 4th century BC.
  2. Wall Panel with Wings and a Pahlavi Device Encircled by Pearls, ca. 6th century AD.
  3. Bowl with Wheel-cuts Facets, ca. 6th – 7th century BC.

The significance of the 3 works chosen for Art From Us, Museum Guide #603

Welcome to the Art From Us, Museum Guide #603. The Metropolitan Museum of Art : Gallery 404 houses objects from what the museum describes as the “four great, late powers of the Near East.” Today we will uncover which these empires are and learn about them briefly.

The Achaemenid Persian Empire

The Achaemenid Empire is believed to have existed between ca. 559 – 331 BC. It was one of the largest empires of the ancient world, stretching from Egypt all the way to the Western and Central regions of Asia. Considered the first Empire of Persia, it is marked by the reign of Cyrus II, after he defeated King Astyages of Media.

Seleucid Empire

The Seleucid Empire is believed to have existed between 331 – 138 BC. Its inception is attributed to the death of Alexander III. Seleucus Nicator, a companion of Alexander, was given responsibility of the eastern provinces of Alexander’s empire upon his death. The territories included in this new empire correspond to parts of modern day Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon.

Parthian Empire

The Seleucid Empire is believed to have existed between 247 BC and 224 AD. In around 250 BC, the Parni successfully invaded the empire of Seleucid, under the leadership of Arsaces. This region came to be known as the Parthian Empire.

Sasanian Empire

The Seleucid Empire is believed to have existed between 224 – 651 AD. The Parthians were defeated by Ardashir I, who was from the bloodline of Sasan. Thus the Sasanian Empire was formed.


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