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    Sale 7659

    Antiquities

    13 October 2008, London, King Street

  • Lot 199

    A ROMAN OVER LIFE-SIZE MARBLE PORTRAIT HEAD OF A NOBLEWOMAN

    CIRCA 1ST CENTURY A.D.

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    A ROMAN OVER LIFE-SIZE MARBLE PORTRAIT HEAD OF A NOBLEWOMAN
    CIRCA 1ST CENTURY A.D.
    With heavy-lidded eyes, incised irises and articulated pupils, aquiline nose, lips heavily indented at the corners, her centrally parted wavy hair drawn back over the tops of her pierced ears, mounted
    15½ in. (39.2 cm.) high


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    PUBLISHED:
    J. Chamay, et al, exhibition catalogue, Le Monde des Césars, Geneva, 1982, advertisement on p. 330.

    It has been suggested that this might be a portrait of the Empress Livia (58 B.C.-29 A.D.), the wife of Augustus Caesar and the mother of Tiberius. The epitome of the dignified Roman matron, she was usually depicted with severely conservative hairstyles, little jewellery and often wearing the stola (veil) over the back of the head.

    The shape of the face and centrally parted wavy hair of this head is similar to those of the Livia portraits in the Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek, Copenhagen, the Capitoline Museum, Rome, and the St Petersburg State Hermitage museum; however, it must be noted that this portrait has articulated pupils whereas none of the other does.

    Special Notice

    VAT rate of 5% is payable on hammer price and at 15% on the buyer's premium
    Please note that the lots of Iranian origin are subject to U.S. trade restrictions which currently prohibit the import into the United States. Similar restrictions may apply in other countries.
    Please note that descriptions of lots in this catalogue do not include references to condition. Condition reports are available on request. Please contact the Antiquities department administrator.


    Provenance

    with Elie Borowski, Basel, circa 1950.
    Swiss private collection, acquired from Galerie Nina Borowski, Paris, in 1984.


    Pre-Lot Text

    THE PROPERTY OF A SWISS PRIVATE COLLECTOR