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    Sale 2174

    Antiquities

    3 June 2009, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 180

    A ROMAN MARBLE PORTRAIT BUST OF A PRIEST

    CIRCA EARLY 2ND CENTURY A.D.

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    A ROMAN MARBLE PORTRAIT BUST OF A PRIEST
    CIRCA EARLY 2ND CENTURY A.D.
    Lifesized, depicting a distinguished man of middle age, his head turned to his right, wearing a tunic with V-shaped folds at the front and a thick mantle draped over his left shoulder, with naturalistic physiognomy, including a creased forehead, a knitted brow, a blunt, rounded nose, deep-set unarticulated eyes with thick lids, shallow under-eye bags and pronounced naso-labial folds, his full beard and mustache closely cropped, his head bald but for thick wavy locks at the sides and a small tuft at the top of his forehead, crowned with a cylindrical diadem of overlapping leaves
    16¾ in. (42.5 cm) high


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    The diadem worn here, cylindrical in form with overlapping leaves, either laurel or olive, most likely represents a gold original. Such diadems signified that the wearer held a priestly office. For a similar diadem on a portrait of a priest see the example at The Ashmolean Museum, pp. 5-6 in Smith and Vickers, "A Roman Priest from the Eastern Mediterranean," The Ashmolean, 49.

    Provenance

    European Private Collection, 1995.
    Anonymous sale; Christies, New York, 8 June 2007, lot 168.


    Pre-Lot Text

    PROPERTY FROM A U.S. PRIVATE COLLECTION