God, philosopher, or poet


Catalogue Raisonné

Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 136; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 110 (additional published references).


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

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Marble, Pentelic

Not On View


The Ancient World



The front half of the head is preserved. Hair, beard, and face have suffered some damage, the nose being mostly cut or worn away. This head probably presents a Hellenistic restyling of an ideal portrait created in the fifth century B.C. There is a broad fillet, roughly sketched, around the forehead. Hellenistic naturalism of about 100 B.C or slightly later has given the sunken, almost hard-bitten line to the mouth, mustache, and adjacent beard. Otherwise, in hair, eyes, and fall of the face, the man gives every indication of being a product of the Pheidian age. There is an Ionian satrapal cast to his features and arrangement of hair.


Presumably from Greece or the Aegean islands.

Credit Line

Gift of Mr. and Mrs. William de Forest Thomson