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Details & Cataloguing

Ancient Sculpture and Works of Art

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A Roman Marble Funerary Altar inscribed for Julia Lyris, 1st Century A.D.
of quadrangular form finely carved on four sides, the front carved in relief with a mask of Medusa beneath a Latin inscription in three lines reading C(aius) Iulius Postumi l(ibertus) Eucomus / Iuliae Postumi l(ibertae) Lyridi f(iliae) et / Faustillae matri eius (Caius Iulius Eucomus, freedman of Postumus, dedicated this to his daughter Julia Lyris, freedwoman of Postumus, and to his mother Faustilla), a krater surmounted by birds perched on the handles on the left side, a phiale mesomphalos on the right side, an oenochoe on the back, the motifs linked by richly carved deeply undercut garlands suspended from bucrania on the corners, guilloche, tongues, and bead-and-reel around the base, a dentil and lesbian kymation around the cornice.
73.3 by 54.3 by 54.3 cm.
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Provenance

Agostino Andrea Chigi (1466-1520), Villa Farnesina, Trastevere, Rome
Cardinal Rodolfo Pio da Carpi (1500-1564), Rome, at his villa on the Quirinal
Eva Rhodes (1943-2008), Stradbroke, Suffolk, recorded with her in an undated photograph by Richard Vaughan Williams (1923-2015), one time Keeper of Antiquities at the Fitzwilliam Museum (http://www.edr-edr.it/edr_programmi/view_img.php?id_nr=161494&lang=it, from the Archives of Prof. Silvio Panciera at the Sapienza Università di Roma)
probably Robin Symes, Ltd., London
American private collection, probably acquired from the above (Sotheby's, New York, December 14th, 1994, no. 149, illus.)
acquired at the above sale by James Francis Scott (1936-2017), Charlottesville, Virginia

Literature

Mariangelo Accorsio, autograph manuscript, between 1517-1521, Bibliotheca Ambrosiana, Milan, D 420, fol. 66: "In aedibus Augustini Chisii", the source for Muratori 1740
Martin van Heemskerck, drawing, between 1532-1536 (Kupferstichkabinett, Berlin, inv. no. 79 D 2, publ. Hübner 1912, Hülsen-Egger 1913, and  http://www.smb-digital.de/eMuseumPlus?service=ExternalInterface&module=collection&objectId=1080354&viewType=detailView), showing the altar in a garden alongside other marbles, including, in front of it, a torso of a kneeling amazon later recorded as fully restored in the Savelli Collection in Rome and now at Wilton House (http://arachne.uni-koeln.de/item/objekt/23013)
Ulisse Aldroandi, Tutte le statue antiche, che in Roma in diversi luoghi, e case particolari si veggono, in Lucio Mauro, Le antichità della città di Roma, Venice, 1556, p. 301 (http://arachne.uni-koeln.de/item/marbilder/3394311)
Martinus Smetius (Martin Smet), Inscriptionum antiquarum quae passim per Europam liber, Leiden, 1588, fol. 115, no. 2 (http://arachne.uni-koeln.de/item/marbilder/3025842)
Jean-Jacques Boissard, Pars Romanae Urbis Topographiae & Antiquitatum, vol. III: Topographia Romanae Urbis, vol. IV, Frankfurt, 1597, pl. 64 (http://arachne.uni-koeln.de/item/marbilder/3367431): "In Quirinali. In area domus Carpensium hortorum. Sub statua Serapis", based on Boissard's own original drawings from circa 1559 (http://census.bbaw.de/easydb/censusID=55493 and http://census.bbaw.de/easydb/censusID=55492)
Jacob van Sandrart, L' Academia Todesca della architectura, scultura & pittura oder Teutsche Academie der edlen Bau-, Bild- und Mahlerey-Künste, vol. 2,2: Von der Scvltura oder Bildereykvnst, 1679, part 2, p. 17, pl. SS (http://digi.ub.uni-heidelberg.de/diglit/sandrart1679b/0059/image) as the base for an Egyptian block statue, probably the "Canopo" mentioned by Aldroandi and the "Serapis" by Boissard and http://ta.sandrart.net/en/purl/text-893), and now in the Louvre, inv. no. A92 (N93) (O. Perdu, Statues privées de la fin de l’Égypte pharaonique (1070 av. J.-.C – 300 apr. J.-C.), vol. I, 2011, pp. 118-127)
Jan Gruter, Inscriptiones antiquae totius orbis romani, vol. II, Amsterdam, 1707, p. 980, no. 4 (http://arachne.uni-koeln.de/item/marbilder/3551391)
Bernard de Montfaucon, L'antiquité expliquée et représentée en figures, vol. 5,1, Paris, 1719, pl. 85 (http://arachne.uni-koeln.de/item/marbilder/3044376), engraving after Boissard
Lodovico Antonio Muratori, Novus Thesaurus veterum inscriptionum, 1740, p. 1586, no. 6 (http://arachne.uni-koeln.de/item/marbilder/3730792), after Accorsio' notes
Corpus Inscriptionum Latinarum, vol. VI, part 3, Berlin, 1886, no. 19969 (http://arachne.uni-koeln.de/item/marbilder/4188157)
Paul Gustav Hübner, Le statue di Roma: Grundlagen für eine Geschichte der antiken Monumente in der Renaissance, vol. 1, 1912, pl. 7
Ch. Hülsen and H. Egger, Die römischen Skizzenbücher von Marten van Heemskerk im Königlichen Kupferstichkabinett zu Berlin, vol. 1, Berlin, 1913, pl. 48, fol. 47r
Ch. Hülsen, Römische Antikengärten des XVI. Jahrhunderts, Heidelberg, 1917, p. 60, no. 35
Dietrich Boschung, Antike Grabaltäre aus den Nekropolen Roms, Bern, 1987, p. 96, no. 641; p. 61, no. I 37, pl. 15 (Montfaucon engraving)
Census of Antique Works of Art and Architecture known in the Renaissance, no. 157600 (http://census.bbaw.de/easydb/censusID=157600)

Ancient Sculpture and Works of Art

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