Portrait head of Philetairos (ruler of Pergamon 284–263 B.C.)

Greek, East Greek
Hellenistic Period
about 260–250 B.C.

Place of Manufacture: Asia Minor, Pergamon (probably)

Catalogue Raisonné

Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 128; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 110 (additional published references).


Height: 31 cm (12 3/16 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Marble probably from the island of Prokonnesos near Istanbul

Not On View


The Ancient World



This head from a portrait statue of a Hellenistic ruler or prince is characterized by strong features, particularly a heavy jaw, cast in the heroic Pergamene mold. He wears a rolled fillet or diadem (laurel crown) in the hair.
The face is somewhat battered and quite weathered, both from antiquity and from later periods. The top and back of the head were broken off irregularly, seemingly many years ago. The neck has an irregular break. There are plough marks (?) across the right side of the face and neck. The surfaces have a yellow-brown patina, including the furrows of the plough marks.

Scientific Analysis:
Harvard Lab No. HI735: Isotope ratios - delta13C +2.68 / delta18O -0.62, Attribution - Probably Prokonnesos, Justification - Crystalline marble with gray bands, medium to coarse grained.


By date unknown: with Robert E. Hecht, Jr. (said to have been found at Bergama [Pergamon] and to come from a private collection in Switzerland); January 12, 1972: gift of Robert E. Hecht, Jr. to MFA

Credit Line

Gift of Robert E. Hecht, Jr.