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Details & Cataloguing

Ancient Marbles: Classical Sculpture and Works of Art

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A Roman Marble Head of Sarapis, late 2nd Century A.D.
with full beard and moustache, parted lips, and long deeply-drilled hair bound in a diadem, falling in multiple strands over the forehead, and flowing in long wavy locks down to his shoulders, the top of the head prepared for addition of the modius, the back roughly worked, traces of red pigment over the beard and hair; no restorations.
Height 33 cm.
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Provenance

said to have been found at Antaradus (modern-day Tartus, on the Syrian coast)
Louis De Clercq (1882-1901), Oignies, inv. no. H 168
by descent to his grand-nephew Comte Henri de Boisgelin (1901-1967), rue de Mazarine, Paris
Nicolas Koutoulakis, Paris and Geneva, 1960s
Drouot-Richelieu, Paris, Millon et Associés, Archéologie et Préhistoire, December 13th, 2016, no. 208, illus.

Literature

André de Ridder, Collection De Clercq. Catalogue, vol. 4: Les marbres, les vases peints et les ivoires, Paris, 1906, p. 38f., no. 34
G.J.F. Kater-Sibbes, Preliminary Catalogue of Sarapis Monuments, Leiden, 1973, p. 77, no. 438 (erroneously as "Paris, Louvre")
Wilhelm Hornbostel, Sarapis, Leiden, 1973, p. 100, note 6, and p. 282, note 2

Catalogue Note

The present head can be securely identified as one of Sarapis based on the mortise and prepared circular surface for a separately-made modius. However, neither the number of locks falling onto the forehead, nor the disposition of the beard locks match any of the known heads of Sarapis (cf. W. Hornbostel, op. cit.). It may be seen as a free rendering of the god's image.

Ancient Marbles: Classical Sculpture and Works of Art

|
London