Goddess

Greek
Classical Period
4th century B.C.


Catalogue Raisonné

Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 047; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 108 (additional published references).

Dimensions

Height: 47 cm (18 1/2 in.)

Accession Number

15.856

Medium or Technique

Marble probably from the Greek island of Paros

Not On View

Collections

The Ancient World

Classifications

Sculpture

The head is from a draped statue about one-third larger than life, and therefore may have been a cult image in a temple. The left shoulder was raised, and the head is inclined slightly to its left and turned in the same direction, so that it must have appeared almost in three-quarter view to a spectator standing in front of the statue. The back of the head is merely roughed out; both ears are carelessly executed, the left less well finished; and the sides of the face are not symmetrical, the left cheek receding to make this ear more prominent.
What survives was made separately for insertion in a statue. The block included part of the breast and shoulders; its base is worked in two oblique planes with roughly tooled surfaces which met at the bottom in a ridge. The missing top of the head was a separate piece; the joint is a circular plane 0.24m in diamenter, with its surface roughly worked except fo a narrow contact band around the edge. In it, about 0.09m. from the front, is a cylindrical dowel hole 0.035m. deep. The various damages to head, neck, and veil are visible in the photographs. Apparently the head was found lying a little below the surface of the ground, with its right side upward. Here its surface has a brown earthy deposit, as well as marks left by the roots of plants, and more than twenty scars due to the finder’s pick. On the left side of the face and on the neck much of the original, carefully finished surface remains unimpaired, with a light, creamy patina.

Scientific Analysis:
Harvard Lab No. HI261: Isotope ratios - delta13C +4.48 / delta18O -3.37, Attribution - Probably Paros 2, Justification - Grayish, coarse grained marble.

Provenance

Rumored to have been found near the Eleusinion between the Athenian Agora and the Acropolis; by 1915: with C. Codekas, 3 North Main Street, Pittston, Pa. (said by him to have been found in Athens but later said by him to have been found in Piraeus); purchased by MFA, May 6, 1915, for $ 1,000.00

Credit Line

Francis Bartlett Donation of 1912 and Museum purchase with funds donated by contribution