Our sale of Antiquities brought $7.95 million, with an impressive 95% of lots sold. Leading the sale was an Augustan marble portrait head of a girl, shown here, which sold above the high estimate for a total of $2.2 million. Also performing strongly was a monumental Roman Imperial figure of a ram from the collection of the Toledo Museum of Art, which achieved $1.8 million.
Sotheby’s is proud to present an exceptional group of Antiquities in June. Leading this season’s sale is a monumental Roman Imperial figure of a ram from the collection of the Toledo Museum of Art. Carved from fine Greek marble and with remarkably naturalistic fleece, it was expertly restored, most likely by Francesco Antonio Franzoni (1734-1818), a specialist in the restoration of ancient Roman animalia hired by Popes Clement XIV and Pius VI to work on the animal figures now in the Sala degli animali at the Vatican.
Another highlight is a beautifully preserved Augustan portrait head of a girl, acquired by Sir D’Arcy Osborne (1884-1964) prior to 1950 and recently on loan to the Munich Glyptothek from a private collection. The superb quality indicates that this portrait was certainly made for a noble family, possibly the Imperial household. Her coiffure was made popular by Livia, wife of Augustus.
We will also offer a collection of 4th Century Attic and South Italian Greek vases acquired in Naples in 1818/1819 for Nostell Priory in Yorkshire by Charles Winn (1795-1874), nephew of Sir Rowland Winn, 6th Baronet of Nostell. When the entire collection was sold by Christie’s in 1975, Nostell’s was the second most substantial collection of Greek vases in England.
Highlighting the Egyptian section of the sale is an important 5th Dynasty limestone relief panel from Sakkara measuring over six feet long, once in the collection of Count Alexandre Louis Henry de Vaucelles, a pioneer in the field of Nubian studies in the 19th century.
Please note that this lot arrived at the University of Pennsylvania Museum for inspection between 5 and 14 January 1926, not prior to 1926 as stated in the printed catalogue. It was shipped from Philadelphia on 19 January 1926 and arrived at the Toledo Museum of Art the following day.