The present lot is a typical archaistic representation of Hermes, distant from the classical and Hellenistic representation of gods and heroes. This type is known as “Hermes Propylaios” (Hermes Before the Gate), as a reference to the example found in 1903 in Pergamon and believed to be part of the “Propylaia” (the entrance gate) of the Acropolis in Athens. Academics initially credited that example as a replica of the Hermes carved by Alkamenes, renowned master in Athens in the 5th century B.C. However this attribution has been contested by several scholars, who suggested that “Propylaios” was not a reference to a particular gateway, but an epithet to Hermes and that it would be more advisable that these types of archaistic heads represent not a work by a specific carver.
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