A ROMAN BRONZE FIGURE OF APHRODITE, CIRCA 2ND CENTURY A.D.

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A ROMAN BRONZE FIGURE OF APHRODITE, CIRCA 2ND CENTURY A.D.

Height incl. base 21.7 cm; 8 ½ in

Price available on request

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PROVENANCE
Lawton collection, Surrey, acquired in the 1960s
thence by descent to his son J. Lawton, Surrey

CATALOGUE NOTE
Perhaps the most recognized deity of classical mythology, Aphrodite was the Greek goddess of love and beauty. Aphrodite's origin myth is relayed by the Greek writer Hesiod in his work, The Theogony. Hesiod explains that the goddess came to be after the titan Cronus (the father of Zeus) severed the genitals of his father, Uranus, and subsequently threw them into the sea. The resulting foam gave birth to Aphrodite who arose as a fully formed, radiant goddess.

Bronze statuettes of Aphrodite such as the present example were created for private devotional use and placed in domestic lararia, or house-shrines; particularly in the eastern part of the Roman Empire: "Based on ... documents [from Roman Egypt], such as marriage and mortgage contracts, these effigies of the goddess accompanied the bride in her daily life so as to guarantee her happiness and prosperity. Throughout the Mediterranean in the Roman period, brides and mothers made offerings to similar statuettes for the blessings of Aphrodite, such as... fertility and harmony [in] their married lives" (Christine Kondoleon, ed., Antioch, The Lost Ancient City, 2000, p. 202).

For all enquires, please contact ancientsculpture@sothebys.com

Currently Available for Private Sale

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