The Iberian peninsula was desirable for both traders and invaders due to its key strategic position at the western part of the Mediterranean where it joins the Atlantic. Iberian culture was subsequently influenced by the civilizations of the eastern Mediterranean through trade and colonies first established by the Phoenicians, and later the Greeks, Carthaginians, and Romans. At the end of the 3rd century B.C. Rome and Carthage waged a bitter struggle for control of this strategic peninsula and its rich silver mines. Rome was eventually successful, and by the early first century A.D. and during the rule of the Emperor Augustus, Iberia and its lands were Roman provinces. Almost all extant works of Iberian sculpture visibly reflect the impact of the foreign cultures with which it came into contact. Each of them has left its mark and therefore Iberian art developed a unique identity visible in forms that range from carved stone to cast bronze statuettes. Even Assyrian and Egyptian art, possibly derived via the influence of the Greeks and Phoenicians, is evident in various stone sculptures in the form of sphinxes, bulls, or lions. Statuettes of bronze found in Iberia are considered to be derived of early Greek and Orientalizing sculptural styles.
Celtiberian Bronze Fibula comprised of Two Horse Protomes
Iberian Bronze Pig
Iberian Bronze Warrior
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