Details & Cataloguing

Ancient Sculpture & Works of Art


A Roman Marble Table Support, circa 1st Century A.D.
with profiled base, slightly tapering shaft of quadrangular section, and profiled cornice, a voluted and square tenon on each side, carved in high relief in front with the bust of a satyr wearing an animal skin and holding a pedum behind his neck, his hair crowned with vine leaves, and on the back with a cuirass; no restorations.
Height 68.3 cm.
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Stefano Bardini (1836-1922), Palazzo Mozzi Bardini, Florence, circa 1900
Paul Mayen (1918-2000), New York, acquired at an art fair in New York in 1984
acquired from the above by the present owner


circa 1900 photograph showing the support in Stefano Bardini’s palazzo in Florence (Musei Civici Fiorentini, Fototeca, Fondo Storico Bardini)

Annalea Tunesi, Stefano Bardini’s photographic archive: a visual historical document, PhD thesis, University of Leeds, 2014, p. 220, photograph no. 6

Catalogue Note

The number 18557-175 is painted in red on the side of the base.

There are several such table supports decorated with busts in relief, including one with a bust of Artemis at Hever Castle (http://arachne.uni-koeln.de/item/objekt/7358), and three examples with the same type of Athena bust (LIMC II, p. 1076, no. 6, pl. 785; Sotheby’s, New York, December 10th, 1999, no. 292). 

Another example with a bust of a satyr, although simpler in execution, is in Rome: A. Giuliano, ed., Museo Nazionale Romano. Le sculture, vol. I.7, 1984, p. 542f., no. XXV,8. 

The backs of these supports are usually decorated with bucrania; the cuirass carved on the present example seems to be unique (for the type of the cuirass compare the cuirass serving as support of a male statuette from Pompeii: D. Kreikenbom, Bildwerke nach Polyklet, 1990, p. 172, no. III.34, pl. 164).

The fragmentary Roman marble bearded head displayed on top of the present lot in the Bardini photograph appears by itself in G. Capecchi, The Historical Photographic Archive of Stefano Bardini: Greek, Etruscan and Roman Art, 1993, p. 65.

Ancient Sculpture & Works of Art