London, South Kensington
25 April 2001
A BRONZE BALSAMARIUM IN THE FORM OF A PTOLEMAIC PORTRAIT BUST
CIRCA 3RD CENTURY B.C.
The ruler, probably Ptolemy IV Philopator or Ptolemy VI Philometor, depicted as Hermes, wearing a chlamys fastened at the right shoulder, shown with vivid frowning expression, his brow furrowed, his eyes with perforated pupils, fleshy face and thick neck, wearing a diadem in his luxuriant curled hair with Hermes' wings surmounted by a vertical lotus leaf in the centre, the hinged lid of the vessel forming the top of his head with two loop handles at each side, mounted
4¾ in. (12.3 cm.) high
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Images, p. 108, no. 31.
Cf. Exhibition Catalogue, La Gloire d'Alexandrie, Paris, 1998, p. 203, nos. 147 and 148 for portraits of Ptolemy VI Philometor.
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