Head of a panther
© Weltkulturerbe Völklinger Hütte / Hans-Georg Merkel
1st to 2nd century AD
1.4 x 1.2 cm
Place of origin
Landesdenkmalamt des Saarlandes
This silver head of a big cat comes from the State Antiquities Collection, the “treasure chest of the State Monuments Office”. Discovered during excavations in Reinheim in 2005, this lifelike object was doubtlessly designed to be attached to an object, as there is a sharp groove on the back of the head. It is unclear, however, what species of big cat the object depicts. It resembles a cheetah, but very similar creatures appear in Ancient Greek and Roman art, where leopards are depicted as the companion and riding animal of the Greek god Dionysus. An animal associated with Dionysus, the god of wine, would certainly have made an appropriate adornment for a wine jug.