• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 12239

    Antiquities

    6 July 2016, London, King Street

  • Lot 86

    A ROMAN MARBLE PORTRAIT BUST OF A YOUNG LADY

    FLAVIAN PERIOD, CIRCA LATE 1ST CENTURY A.D.

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    A ROMAN MARBLE PORTRAIT BUST OF A YOUNG LADY
    FLAVIAN PERIOD, CIRCA LATE 1ST CENTURY A.D.
    Her youthful face turned slightly to the right, with large, lidded, almond-shaped eyes, her hair arranged in an elaborate arching haloed coiffure composed of rows of deeply-drilled tiny curls, combed forwards from a parting running across the crown of the head, behind which the hair is combed back, set in multiple plaits and twisted into a large bun at the back of the head, wearing a V-neck stola with a palla draped over her shoulders, set on an integral socle

    23 ½ in. (59.7 cm.) high


    Contact Client Service
    • info@christies.com

    • New York +1 212 636 2000

    • London +44 (0)20 7839 9060

    • Hong Kong +852 2760 1766

    • Shanghai +86 21 6355 1766

    Contact the department

    The dramatic emergence of the Flavian dynasty after the chaos of 69 A.D. was echoed in the extraordinary shift in women's hairstyles. Simply put, 'women strove to pile their hair higher and higher upon their heads' (D. E. E. Kleiner & S. B. Matheson, I Claudia, Woman in Ancient Rome, Yale, 1996, p. 169). 'Manifestly self-concious and flamboyant' (ibid.), these coiffures were costly, time-consuming and difficult to maintain - an ideal way, therefore, to instantly impart to the viewer the wealth and life of leisure enjoyed by the subject.

    Special Notice

    These lots have been imported from outside the EU for sale using a Temporary Import regime. Import VAT is payable (at 5%) on the Hammer price. VAT is also payable (at 20%) on the buyer’s Premium on a VAT inclusive basis. This VAT is not shown separately on the invoice. When a buyer of such a lot has registered an EU address but wishes to export the lot or complete the import into another EU country, he must advise Christie's immediately after the auction.


    Provenance

    Private collection, Switzerland, acquired prior to 1966.