4 June 2008
A ROMAN MARBLE TRAGIC THEATER MASK OF HERCULES
CIRCA 1ST CENTURY A.D.
Likely an architectural element, perhaps from a theater complex, the hero wearing the skin of the Nemean lion over his thick cork-screw curls, the feline fangs positioned above his forehead, the megaphone-like mouth surrounded by thick locks of the beard and mustache, curling at their tips, the broad nose with undulating horizontal grooves, the nostrils deeply drilled, his expression emphasized by deep horizontal grooves across the forehead and outlining the brows above the bridge of the nose, the wide almond-shaped eyes with the pupils hollowed, with thick lids and tapering brows, the inner canthi drilled
16 3/8 in. (41.6 cm.) high
Swiss Private Collection, 1940s.
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For a similar mask from the theater at Ostia see fig. 805 in Bieber, The History of The Greek and Roman Theater.
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