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Document Details :
Title: 'Child Sacrifice' without Children or Sacrifice
Subtitle: The Pozo Moro Relief
Author(s): AZIZE, Joseph
Journal: Ancient Near Eastern Studies
Volume: 51 Date: 2014
In this study I consider a fifth-century BCE relief from Pozo Moro, Spain, which is often thought to depict Phoenician ‘child sacrifice’. First, I briefly discuss the excavations at Pozo Moro. Second, I contend that nothing depicted in the relief can reasonably be interpreted as a sacrifice and, furthermore, that there are no children in it. Third, I suggest that in fact it represents a parody of the Phoenician 'presentation' scene exemplified on the Ahirom (also spelled Ahiram) sarcophagus from Byblos and sundry other artefacts. Finally, I note that it might be a forerunner of the artistic style known as the 'grotesque', a style which was previously thought to have originated in Hellenistic studios. Thus, one more piece in the chain of evidence for a regular practice of child sacrifice among the Phoenicians and Carthaginians disappears.