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Ancient lost wax casting

Ever wonder how old the lost wax casting process is. I sold a piece
of my art work to a very interesting gentleman who was an
Archeologist on a dig in Israel. The second day of the show he
showed me a book about the discovery of lost wax copper items in a
cave, named the cave of the treasure, near where the dead sea
scrolls were discovered. The copper cast items were dated between
3500 to 4500 BC. He said the people had discovered a way to melt
copper and very shortly discovered a way to cast copper. Standards:
80 of these, 10-40 cm. long and 2-3 cm. in diameter; some hollow and
some solid. Many are decorated with engraved lines, herringbone
pattern, or globular or flat protrusions; some are decorated with
images of animals such as ibex, deer, squab, wild goat and birds.
They appear to be decorations for the end of wooden staffs. There
was one piece that consisted of four rams heads on a tube that would
have mounted on a wood shaft. Crowns: ten crowns, similar in form,
but varying in size: 15.5-19 cm. in diameter, 9-17.5 cm. in height,
930-1,970 gm. in weight. The walls are concave, decorated with
herringbone and spiral patterns. On top of the crowns protrude
architectural motifs (gates), animals and birds, a human face and
prominent horns. Check out

Lee Epperson

Lee, in my off list email to you; I incorrectly remarked on a Han
Dynasty gold belt buckle - the article I was referring to actually
appeared in the Feb '04 issue of National Geographic (pg 20). The
relic can also be viewed at

The archaeological artifacts (bronze-jade-gold) I mentioned are in
the March '04 issue of Art & Antiques magazine (pg.70) are
attributed to (China) Sichuan second millennium BCE and unearthed in
the village of Sanxingdui by workers looking for clay to make bricks
( More on these relics can also be found at

Regards, Mark