Marble head from a herm


On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 153

Copy of a Greek marble herm of ca. 450–425 B.C.

The messenger god Hermes was closely associated with boundaries, and his protective image in the form of a bearded head set on a rectangular stone shaft was placed at doorways and at strategic points along the roadside. This beautiful head gives a sense of the serene grandeur that marked images of Zeus during the high classical period. The most famous of these was the gigantic gold and ivory statue of Zeus at Olympia, made by Phidias.

Marble head from a herm, Marble, Roman

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