Facing frontally, this fine torso depicts a youthful body with subtle musculature in the contrapposto posture. The weight resting on the figure’s left hip, combined with the highly raised shoulder, strongly suggests that the present sculpture is a Roman copy of the Pouring Satyr type attributed to the late classical master sculptor, Praxiteles.
Consistent with other surviving Roman copies of this type, the attributes of the Satyr are either lost, or minimised (namely the absence of a tail). Despite this, the dramatic pose is unmistakeable: the Satyr raises his right arm aloft, and would have poured wine into his kylix or drinking horn from an audacious height.
Praxitelean Satyr types have been the subject of intense debate as a result of their inclusion in an anecdote in Pausanias' Desription of Greece i.20.1. Fearing that his workshop was on fire, Praxiteles confessed that he considered his Satyr and Eros statues to be his true masterpieces. The present torso is a Roman copy of one candidate for this accolade, but the sculptural type of a 'Resting Satyr' has also been attributed to Praxiteles (O. Palagia & J.J. Pollitt (Eds.), Personal Styles in Greek Sculpture, Cambridge, 1999, pp. 110-111).
Comparative marble figures to various degrees of completeness can be viewed at the J. Paul Getty Museum (Inv. No. 2002.34, originally found at Castel Gandolfo), and the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore (Inv. No. 23.22z).