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Limestone votary of a bearded male with a wreath
2nd half of 5th century B.C.
Height: 70 1/2 in. (179.1 cm)
The Cesnola Collection, Purchased by subscription, 1874–76
The right forearm, from the elbow to the hand, is modern. Part of the branch and the extremity of the left foot are broken. The left leg is advanced, turned slightly outward, and very slightly bent. There are closed sandals on the feet, the upper tongues of which are in the shape of half a star. Both arms are held to the sides of the body, from which the forearms are detached. A tenon joins the hands to the body. The left hand holds a box and a small branch, the right holds a phiale. The figure wears a pleated, elbow-length chiton, the edge of which forms a triangle on the chest, revealing a garment underneath. A himation, draped over the left shoulder, falls to the middle of the leg. The himation forms a roll across the abdomen. It covers the arm and forms a zigzag fold on the torso and the length of the left leg. The beard is divided into four rows of very tight corkscrew curls and, below, a row of wavy strands. The lips, faintly smiling, are surmounted by a mustache with twisted strands that falls to the sides. The nose is large, hooked, and pointed. The eyes are deep-set in their orbs under raised eyebrows. The rendering of the ears is careless. The two rows of locks on the forehead are partially hidden by the wreath, which consists of a heavy stem decorated with open blossoms (narcissus?) at the center. At the bottom are ivy leaves and, at the center, small berries circling central wavy locks. At the top are pointed leaves with detailed ribs that present at their base a “pistil” in high relief. The locks on the head, which ends in a point, are separated by a central part. On the nape of the neck are short, wavy locks.
This statue is one of the last to preserve the traditional principles of representation. It differs, however, in the position of the slightly bent left leg, the “modernized” drapery, and the facial structure, despite the persistence of the smile. The head can be compared to one in the British Museum C 158, found in the sanctuary of Apollo at Idalion, that dates from the middle of the fifth century B.C. or a little after.61 Seen in profile, the face is very similar to that of the satrap Tissaphernes on coins issued in 412/411 B.C.62
From the Sanctuary of Golgoi–Ayios Photios
Myres, John L. 1914. Handbook of the Cesnola Collection of Antiquities from Cyprus. no. 1408, New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Hermary, Antoine and Joan R. Mertens. 2013. The Cesnola Collection: Stone Sculpture. no. 86, Myres 1408, New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
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