Tyche, the personification of chance or fortune, was also understood as the protector of cities. Linked to civic pride and well-being, she appeared in a range of media, including coins, stone reliefs, glass bottles, and stone and copper-alloy sculptures. Here, Tyche sits on a low throne. Wearing a mural crown, chiton, and peplos, she holds a cornucopia in her left hand. She extends her right hand, which held a now-missing attribute, possibly a staff. It is difficult to identify which city is represented by the statuette, but regardless, the sculpture is representative of the small-scale Tyche images found throughout the late Roman and early Byzantine worlds.
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Title:Statuette of the Personification of a City
Culture:Late Roman or Byzantine
Dimensions:Overall: 10 1/16 x 5 11/16 x 4 1/16 in. (25.5 x 14.4 x 10.3 cm)
Credit Line:Fletcher Fund, 1947
Said to have been found in Rome; Mme. Edouard Warneck, Paris (sold Hôtel Drouot, June 13-16, 1905); [ Arthur Sambon, Paris (sold Galerie Georges Petit, May 25-28, 1914)]; Robert Rousset(sold 1947); [ Brummer Gallery, Paris and New York ( sold 1947)]
Baltimore Museum of Art. "Early Christian and Byzantine art, an exhibition held at the Baltimore Museum of Art," April 25–June 22, 1947.
Los Angeles County Museum of Art. "The Middle Ages: Treasures from The Cloisters and The Metropolitan Museum of Art," January 18, 1970–March 29, 1970.
Chicago. Art Institute of Chicago. "The Middle Ages: Treasures from The Cloisters and The Metropolitan Museum of Art," May 16, 1970–July 5, 1970.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Age of Spirituality: Late Antique and Early Christian Art, Third to Seventh Century," November 19, 1977–February 12, 1978.
Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, Smithsonian Institution. "The Continental Image: Allegorical Representations of the Four Continents," February 19–May 19, 1985.
Bell Gallery, List Art Center, Brown University. "Survival of the Gods: Classical Mythology in Medieval Art," February 28–March 29, 1987.
Yale University Art Gallery. "An Obsession with Fortune: Tyche in Greek and Roman Ar," September 1–December 1, 1994.
Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Harvard Art Museums. "Byzantine Women and Their World," October 25, 2002–April 28, 2003.
Trier, Germany. Rheinisches Landesmuseum Trier. "Konstantin der Grosse: Imperator Caesar, Flavius, Constantinus," June 2, 2007–November 4, 2007.
Collection E. Warneck – Objets d'art antique: Marbres, Bronzes, Terres Cuites, Ivoires, Verrerie et bijoux. Paris: Hôtel Drouot, June 13–16, 1905. no. 115, pl. XI.
Catalogue des Objets d'Art et de Haute Curiosité, de l'Antiquité, du Moyen Age, de la Renaissance et Autres [...] formant la Collection de Arthur Sambon. Paris: Galerie Georges Petit, May 25–28, 1914. no. 81, p. 23, ill.
Sambon, Arthur. Exposition de sculpture: Sculpture comparée de l'Antiquité, du Moyen Âge et de la Renaissance. Paris: Arthur Sambon, 1928. no. 68, pl. XXXVII.
Sambon, Arthur. Aperçu général de l’évolution de la sculpture depuis l’Antiquité jusqu’à la fin de XVIe siècle. Paris: Bibliothèque du Musée, 1931. pp. 36–37, pl. XXXIII.
Miner, Dorothy, ed. Early Christian and Byzantine Art: An Exhibition Held at the Baltimore Museum of Art. Baltimore: Walters Art Museum, 1947. no. 205, p. 57, pl. XXXV.
Weitzmann, Kurt. "Byzantine Art and Scholarship in America." American Journal of Archaeology, 2nd series, 51, no. 4 (1947). p. 404.
Ross, Marvin C. "A Silver Treasure from Daphne-Harbie." Archaeology 6, no. 1 (Spring 1953). p. 39.
Vermeule, Cornelius C. "The Colossus of Porto Raphti in Attica." Hesperia 31, no. 1 (1962). p. 76.
Ostoia, Vera K. The Middle Ages: Treasures from the Cloisters and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Los Angeles: Los Angeles County Museum of Art, 1969. no. 7, pp. 26–27, 252.
Weitzmann, Kurt, ed. Age of Spirituality: Late Antique and Early Christian Art, Third to Seventh Century. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1979. no. 154, pp. 175–76.
Survival of the Gods: Classical Mythology in Medieval Art. Providence, R.I.: Brown University, 1987. no. 25, pp. 98–99.
Shepard, Mary B. Europe in the Middle Ages, edited by Charles T. Little, and Timothy B. Husband. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1987. p. 27, pl. 13.
Matheson, Susan B. "The Goddess Tyche." In An Obsession with Fortune: Tyche in Greek and Roman Art, edited by Susan B. Matheson. New Haven: Yale University Art Gallery, 1994. no. 63, pp. 25–26, 117, fig. 10.
Kalavrezou, Ioli. Byzantine Women and their World. Cambridge, MA: Harvard Art Museums, 2003. pp. 43–44, ill.
Demandt, Alexander, and Josef Engemann, ed. Konstantin der Große: Imperator Caesar, Flavius, Constantinus. Trier: Konstantin-Ausstellungsgesellschaft (Rhineland Palatinate/Diocese of Trier/City of Trier), 2007. p. 172, CD-ROM: I.15.15.
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