Large Brass Double-headed Eagle Door Knocker, 20th Century
Designed as a stylized repoussé double headed eagle fashioned entirely of brass, detailing textured feathers, the wings and tail dramatically splayed, enclosing a polished blank shield, the swing handle large enough to accommodate the width of a hand. A powerful symbol of Romanov Russia or of the Hapsburg Austro-Hungarian empire-take your pick.
-13 x 12 in (w x l); 4.8 lbs.
The bicephalous eagle’s origins can be traced back to the beginning of Civilization itself, in Sumer some five millennia past. With its heads facing both west and east, the mythological raptor came to symbolize universal rule for a number of ancient realms, including the Hittites, the Seljuk Turks, the Holy Roman Empire and Byzantium. Ivan III, the first Muscovite ruler to claim the imperial title of tsar, adopted Eastern Rome’s arms around 1500 AD, after the fall of Constantinople to the Turks.