The figure is a reduced version of a type that is known in numerous Roman copies. The inscription on the base of our example gives the name Europa. She is best known as the princess carried off to Crete by Zeus in the form of a bull. Their children were Minos, Rhadamanthys, and Sarpedon. Thanks to depictions in vase-paintings, other representations are known of Europa standing and wrapped in a cloak, rather than seated on the back of a bull. The identity of the work, however, remains a subject of scholarly discussion.
Richter, Gisela M. A. 1925. "Recent Accessions of Ancient Marbles." Bulletin of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 20(4): pp. 106-7, fig. 3.
Richter, Gisela M. A. 1953. Handbook of the Greek Collection. pp. 78, 220, pl. 60f, Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.
Robertson, Martin and Cambridge University Press. 1975. A History of Greek Art, Vols. 1 and 2. p. 193, Cambridge, England.
Vollkommer, Rainer. 1987. "Héraclès et le taureau: L'identification de la scène sur les vases attiques de la deuxième moitié du Ve siècle." Bulletin de Correspondance Hellénique, 111(1): pp. 153-4, fig. 6.
Kossatz-Deissmann, Anneliese, Brigitte Servais-Soyez, Fulvio Canciani, Giovannangelo Camporeale, Hans Peter Isler, Ingrid Krauskopf, Odette Touchefeu-Meynier, Marcel Le Glay, and Dr. Jean-Charles Balty. 1988. Lexicon Iconographicum Mythologiae Classicae, Vol. 4: Eros-Herakles. Europe I, no. 1a, Zürich: Artemis Verlag Zurich und Munchen.
Bodel, John P. and Stephen Tracy. 1997. Greek and Latin Inscriptions in the USA: A Checklist. p. 191, Rome: The American Academy in Rome.