Portrait of a man

Roman
Imperial Period
about A.D. 180


Catalogue Raisonné

Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 361.

Dimensions

Height: 15.5 cm (6 1/8 in.)

Accession Number

28.861

Medium or Technique

Marble, from western Turkey: Göktepe (near Aphrodisias) or Dokimeion

Not On View

Collections

The Ancient World

Classifications

Sculpture

The head is a nearly half life-sized portrait of a young man whose features, combined with the style of carving in hair and face, suggest he was perhaps an Arab or North African whose ancestors included Macedonians or Greeks.
This piece is of Greek or Asiatic work from the middle Antonine period, as evidenced by the partly drilled hair, the incised lines for the suggestions of sideburns, the deep, decisive carving of wrinkles between the eyebrows, the lines around the eyelids, and the line of the closed lips. The broad face, high cheekbones, and firm jaw were emphasized by the high, hard polish of flesh surfaces.
The face and, to a lesser extent, the hair, have suffered considerably from breaks and hammering. The surfaces have some incrustation and a dark yellow coloring, like ivory. The head has been broken from a statue and has been badly damaged, perhaps deliberately as a damnatio memoriae.

Scientific Analysis:

University of South Florida Lab No. 8470: Isotope ratios - delta13C +2.8 / delta18O -2.8,

Attribution - Göktepe (near Aphrodisias) or Dokimeion, Turkey. Justification - C and O isotopes, fine grain.

Provenance

By 1928: with Edward Perry Warren; gift of Edward Perry Warren to MFA, November 8, 1928

Credit Line

Gift of Edward Perry Warren