Gundestrup cauldron

iron age silver cauldron found in Denmark

The Gundestrup cauldron is a richly decorated silver vessel, thought to date from between 200 BC and 300 AD, or more narrowly between 150 BC and 1 BC. This places it within the late La Tène period or early Roman Iron Age. The cauldron is the largest known example of European Iron Age silver work (diameter: 69 cm (27 in); height: 42 cm (17 in)). It was found dismantled, with the other pieces stacked inside the base, in 1891, in a peat bog near the hamlet of Gundestrup in the Aars parish of Himmerland, Denmark (56°49′N 9°33′E). It is now usually on display in the National Museum of Denmark in Copenhagen, with replicas at other museums; during 2015–16, it was in the UK on a travelling exhibition called The Celts.


  • A shared pictorial and technical tradition stretched from India to Thrace, where the cauldron was made, and thence to Denmark. Yogic rituals, for example, can be inferred from the poses of an antler-bearing man on the cauldron and of an ox-headed figure on a seal impress from the Indian city of Mohenjo-Daro…Three other Indian links: ritual baths of goddesses with elephants (the Indian goddess is Lakṣmī); wheel gods (the Indian is Viṣṇu); the goddesses with braided hair and paired birds (the Indian is Hariti).
    • Art historian Timothy Taylor writing in the Scientific American. [1] Timothy Taylor Scientific American Vol. 266, No. 3 (MARCH 1992), pp. 84-89 (6 pages) also quoted in [2]

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