Temple rituals during the Early Dynastic period included making offerings of food, drink, and probably incense to the gods. This stand, with four rings supported by a magnificent ibex, would have supported lamps or bowls holding offerings or incense and may have been used in temple or in banquet rituals.
This stand was made by a sophisticated method of metalwork known as the lost-wax technique. The desired image was sculpted in wax and surrounded with clay that hardened into a mold when baked. When the mold was fired, the wax was melted and 'lost,' leaving a negative space that corresponded to the wax image. Molten metal was then poured into the cavity to form a reproduction of the original wax model.