Torso of a youth (kouros)

Archaic Period
about 560–550 B.C.

Catalogue Raisonné

Sculpture in Stone (MFA), no. 012; Sculpture in Stone and Bronze (MFA), p. 106 (additional published references).


Height x width: 40.7 x 39.3 cm (16 x 15 1/2 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Marble, probably from the Greek island of Paros

On View

Archaic Greece Gallery (Gallery 113)


The Ancient World



This torso of a kouros, preserved from the neck to the waist, had the arms at the sides and the left leg slightly advanced. The left upper arm to the elbow and a smaller portion of the right arm are preserved. The hair is arranged in nine major tresses on the back and three on either side of the neck in front, with much of the original red paint preserved. Two drill holes on either side of the neck in front are, seemingly, for attachment of tresses as they mount to the head, although they may have been caused when a chisel was used to work out the area behind the tresses. Those tresses on the back are subdivided lengthwise into four narrow strands, while those on either side each have three subdivisions.
The torso has been broken irregularly through the waist. The head, some of the neck, and the forearms were removed in a similar fashion. The remaining surfaces have suffered slightly. They have a few traces of deposit and a very light yellow patina.
Scientific Analysis:
Marble has been scientifically tested with X-Ray Diffraction and determined to be Calcitic.
Harvard Lab No. HI097: Isotope ratios - delta13C +2.67 / delta18O -2.70, Attribution - Probably Paros 2, Justification - White, medium-grained marble.


By 1939: with T. Zoumpoulakis, 10 Edward Law, Athens (said to have been found quite close to the Acropolis in Athens); purchased by MFA from T. Zoumpoulakis, April 13, 1939, for $ 6,000.00

Credit Line

Archibald Cary Coolidge Fund