Hebrew Union College/Gezer Excavation

This gold leaf figurine from the gold hoard at Gezer popped out of the balk on the last day of the dig. Identified as a female by the stylized pubic triangle, this nude figure wears a distinctive broad collar around her neck. The collar and high headdress reflect a strong Egyptian influence. Around the lady’s neck a thin, hooked strip of gold provides the key to identifying the goddess. This neckpiece is similar to those found on statuettes of the Canaanite goddess, Astarte, and therefore, most probably, this finely detailed 16th-century B.C. gold piece from Gezer is also Astarte.