Sacrificing youth

Italic, Etruscan
Late Hellenistic
2nd century B.C.

Catalogue Raisonné

Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), no. 079.


Height: 19.4 cm (7 5/8 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique


Not On View


The Ancient World



The young man pours out a libation of wine from the bowl in his right hand and holds a box for incense in his left. He wears a toga around his lower body and over his left shoulder and a wreath of leaves with a fruit or flower at the center. There are tangs under his feet. Green patina with slight encrustation.
Statuettes of this type were quite common in the interior of Etruria and in the adjoining parts of Umbria; cities like Todi, Perugia, or Chiusi could have been centers of production. It was said that this figure was found at Nemi, south of Rome, but it is more likely to have come from the usual area of distribution for such objects well to the north.


Said to have been dredged up from Lake Nemi with a group of bronzes said to be from the shrine of Diana at Lake Nemi; by 1908: with Spink & Son, Ltd., 5, 6 & 7 King Street, St. James's, London, S.W. 1; by 1913: Captain E. G. Spencer-Churchill Collection; by 1965: with Christie, Manson and Woods, Ltd., 8 King Street, St. James's, London S1 (Christie's auction, June 23, 1965, lot 506, repeating the provenance of Lake Nemi); by 1966: Horace L. Mayer Collection (loaned to MFA as 502.66); by 1974: Mrs. Horace L. Mayer Collection: gift of Mrs. Horace L. Mayer to MFA, December 27, 1974.

The provenance from Lake Nemi has been question by Martin Bentz: Etruskische Votivbronzen des Hellenismus.

Credit Line

Gift of Mrs. Horace L. Mayer