A-Level: Animals in 2D or 3D works

Capitoline Wolf, 5th century B.C.E. or medieval, bronze, 75 cm (Capitoline Museums, Rome)
Abandoned as infants, the mythical founders of Rome were raised by a she-wolf.

Capitoline She-wolf

Standing Hippopotamus, ca. 1961–1878 B.C.E., Egypt, Middle Kingdom, faience, 7 7/8″ x 2 15/16″ x 4 7/16″ / 20 cm x 7.5 cm x 11.2 cm (The Metropolitan Museum of Art).
This hippopotamus, found in a tomb, carries symbols of life and death, regeneration and chaos—why was it broken?

Standing Hippopotamus

, The Standard of Ur, 2600-2400 B.C.E., shell, red limestone, lapis lazuli, and bitumen (original wood no longer exists), 21.59 x 49.53 x 12 cm, Ur © Trustees of the British Museum
Intentionally buried as part of an elaborate ritual, this ornate object tells us so much, but also too little.

Standard of Ur

Bushel with ibex motifs
This beautiful pot was created over 5,000 years ago, and its decoration echoes its shape.

Bushel with ibex motifs

Approaching Mycenae was awe inspiring: a massive hill, walls of enormous stones, and the fearsome Lion Gate.

Lion Gate

The David Vases
Dragons! Elephants! A phoenix! Many motifs cover these tall vases, but it’s the inscriptions that date the pair.

The David Vases

Lion Hunts of Ashurbanipal (ruled 669-630 B.C.E.), c. 645 B.C.E., gypsum,Neo-Assyrian, hall reliefs from Palace at Ninevah across the Tigris from present day Mosul, Iraq; excavated by H. Rassam beginning in 1853 (British Museum)
Only the king was permitted to kill lions—and doing so signified his power and ability to keep nature at bay.

Ashurbanipal Hunting Lions

Exekias, Dionysos Kylix (detail)
This cup depicts the god of wine Dionysos escaping pirates by hiding and turning them into dolphins.

Exekias, Dionysos Kylix

Franz von Stuck, The Sin - detail
Entranced by the evil of the human psyche, we come face to face with art history’s creepiest snake.

Franz von Stuck, The Sin

The Coronation Mantle
Made for a Christian ruler by Islamic artisans, this cloak is full of Islamic motifs and cosmological references.

Coronation Mantle