Lot 40
  • 40

A Roman Marble Head of Ganymede, circa 1st Century A.D.

250,000 - 350,000 GBP
bidding is closed


  • A Roman Marble Head of Ganymede
  • marble
  • Height 34 cm.; height of face 15 cm.
or Paris or Attis, probably after a Classical Greek original sculpture, turned sharply to his right, his youthful face with parted lips and heavy-lidded eyes, his long wavy hair parted in the center and falling in corkscrew curls over the sides and nape of the neck, the ear-flaps of his Phrygian cap pulled up and knotted in back; Thasian marble, minor fills to lips.


Arthur Sambon (1867-1947), Paris, acquired prior to 1931
French private collection, by descent from the above until 2017


Arthur Sambon, Aperçu général de l’évolution de la sculpture depuis l’antiquité jusqu’à la fin du XVIe siècle, Paris, 1931, p. 29, pl. 23, as "Art Hellénistique (Ecole d’Aphrodisias), Tête d’Atys"

Catalogue Note

There is no other known copy of the present head, but its superior workmanship suggests a hitherto unknown Greek original unlikely to have been created before the later 4th Century B.C.

The turn of the head is similar to the type of the Paris-Lansdowne (C. Giroire and D. Roger, eds., Roman Art from the Louvre, 2007, p. 84, no. 25), while the rich, centrally parted hair recalls the head of a statue in Kassel: P. Gercke and N. Zimmermann-Elseify, Antike Steinskulpturen und neuzeitliche Nachbildungen in Kassel, 2007, pp. 176ff., no. 51. For another head of a youth with Phrygian cap also see Sotheby's, New York, June 7th, 2007, no. 46.