Bronze; H. 29 5/8 in. (75.3 cm)
Rogers Fund, 1920 (20.194)
This fragmentary torso of a nude youth is most likely a bronze replica of a Greek bronze statue from the early fifth century B.C., when Greek sculptors were beginning to substitute a more relaxed, naturalistic stance for the rigid pose that had been used for over 150 years. The statue is preserved from just below the hips to the base of the neck, but is missing the entire right side. The fact that the left hip appears slightly higher than the right suggests that the figure may have been posed with most of its weight on the left foot and the right knee slightly bent. The delicately modeled left shoulder is pulled back slightly, but due to the statue's fragmentary state, it is impossible to determine the original positions of the arms. Like other ancient bronze statuary, this torso originally had inlaid copper nipples that would have rendered a more lifelike appearance.
In antiquity, most freestanding statues were of bronze rather than marble. The majority of these works are now lost, having been melted down at some point in order to reuse the metal. We know something of their appearance since the Romans admired many of the better-known statues and had them copied in marble and sometimes bronze.