• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 12239

    Antiquities

    6 July 2016, London, King Street

  • Lot 100

    A LATE ROMAN MARBLE TABLETOP FRAGMENT

    THEODOSIAN, CIRCA 379-457 A.D.

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    A LATE ROMAN MARBLE TABLETOP FRAGMENT
    THEODOSIAN, CIRCA 379-457 A.D.
    Of curving form, with the heads of Priam and Hecuba facing each other to the left, the bearded king and his wife both wearing Phrygian caps, another female figure to the right, her hair bound in a fillet and low chignon
    12 ½ in. (32 cm.) wide


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    This fragment attests to the extent to which the Trojan cycle continued to grip the imagination of the ancients up to the very end of the Classical period. The decoration no doubt sought to stimulate learned conversation amongst the diners, as well as flaunting the host's cultured sensibilities. It has been suggested that other couples from the Trojan myth may have formed the rest of the tabletop's decoration, with the young female to the left being half of one such other pairing (private correspondence, J. Dresken-Weiland). For further, see ibid., Reliefierte Tischplatten aus Theodosianischer Zeit, Rome, 1991.

    Provenance

    Dupré-Töpfer collection.
    with Antiken-Kabinett, Frankfurt, from whom acquired by the present owner in 1992.