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- See also: Mosaics
From what I can figure, this one is called "Sacrifice." I'll get back to that later. By two sculptors, and I'll get back to that sooner.
The sculptor's gone to the trouble of faces. I'd guess she worked from portraits, which means they were people who considered themselves important enough to need them. The scene is a classic example of "don't do this" because the sculptor hates them. It's in the way it's carved: all fast, hard edges. Uglier than they need to be, even for your average Tevinter who - and this isn't just me, mind - stands like a lanky vein of lyrium. But don't mistake that for sloppy carving. It's natural, practiced. The carver knows Tevinter. Bet she is one, and it's self-hate, probably.
And obvious enough. There's skulls all over, and two big and horned. That brings to mind your Qunari, and fair enough, right? Tevinters hate Qunari and have ever since they showed up. No magister wants his mouth contradicted, let alone stitched. So it makes sense they're there, even that early, I suppose.
Because this is probably that business of readying to invade the Fade, and giants with horns are a good motivator to sodding hurry up. Odd thing, though, is that those two are not the only Qunari in the carving. The one in the middle was sculpted with horns, and someone has gone in later and chipped them off. You can tell by the surface of it. Well, maybe you can't. But I can.
Seen it happen time and again. Tastes change, and the ancestor's nudes are suddenly embarrassing. So in comes a new hand to paint on some clothes. And here, judging by the marks, to cut away the horns and make the victim look human. Some proud new owner didn't want to throw out the antiquity, but also didn't want people to think grandm'ma sliced up Qunari. Looks like they didn't care if she kept their heads around, though.
So! The carvers both wanted to show Tevinter being shits, but the later one didn't want to show what about. And that's usually to avoid blame or deny credit. Or to be an arse, I suppose.