George Washington

Horatio Greenough American

Not on view

When this bust of George Washington first entered the collection in 1884, it was attributed to the Italian sculptor, Lorenzo Bartolini (1777-1850). The sculpture was subsequently reattributed, however, to one of Bartolini's American pupils, Horatio Greenough. Relying on Jean-Antoine Houdon's 1789 bust of Washington, which was based on a life mask, Greenough was faithful to physiognomy, but he altered the hairstyle, raised the eyebrows, and borrowed the blank eyeballs typical of imperial Roman and late antique portraiture. Although it is not certain when this bust was executed, it was probably modeled by Greenough and carved in Italy before he received his important 1832 commission for a statue of Washington for the rotunda of the United States Capitol (now in the National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C.).

George Washington, Horatio Greenough (American, Boston, Massachusetts 1805–1852 Somerville, Massachusettes), Marble, American

Due to rights restrictions, this image cannot be enlarged, viewed at full screen, or downloaded.

Open Access

As part of the Met's Open Access policy, you can freely copy, modify and distribute this image, even for commercial purposes.


Public domain data for this object can also be accessed using the Met's Open Access API.