- AD 218-235, Roma
- Sardeis veya Müze Env. No.
- Uninv. R2, Cat. 254
- Mermer, Taş
- Eserin Türü
- Heykelin Türü
- Portre, İnsan Figürü
- Bulunduğu Yeri
- Found 1842 "near a Temple of Cybele on the Pactolus" (Nicholls, Trinity College Coll., 81).
The portrait was worked for insertion into a statue body. The head is turned slightly to the l., and the woman looks upwards, as indicated by the drilled bean-shaped pupils which are placed high within the incised irises. The surfaces of the eyes are rounded; the upper lids are heavy, with a distinct fold line indicated. Tear ducts are delicately carved. Eyebrows are both carved in relief and incised to show individual hairs. Although the tip of the nose is broken, one can still see the soft-looking and slightly flared nostrils. The mouth has a sharply curved upper lip, which dips noticeably in the center and at the corners. The mouth is not smiling, but relaxed. A strong but slightly recessed chin leads to heavy fleshy folds of a double chin, and a prominent Adam's apple. The ears, which protrude to the sides under the pressure of the heavy hair, are beautifully carved to imply even the soft texture of an ear lobe. The hair, waving to the sides from a central part, is pushed behind the ears, leaving them entirely exposed. It is then gathered into a horizontal, oblong coil at the back of the neck. The hair at the back of the head is, however, only roughly finished; no incisions to indicate individual strands are visible, as they are at the front; only a rough pattern can be seen on the coil. On the temple at each side a few short strands have escaped and lie against the cheek. The surfaces of the face have been finely smoothed. The underside of the neck, not to be seen, has been only roughly finished; claw chisel marks are still visible.
The head has certain characteristics in common with several heads from Ephesus, all of which date to the period of Elagabalus or Alexander Severus, i.e. A.D. 218-235. In one (İnan-Rosenbaum, Roman Byzantine Portrait Sculpture, no. 163), the full curved mouth is very similar except for the drilled corners in the Ephesus head, and the hair style is similar too except for the short locks on the latter's forehead. The back of the Sardis lady's hairdo, which shows not only a narrow oblong coil but also, at the very bottom, a plait of hair at l. center, which overlaps a similar one at the r., is very close to that shown in another Ephesus head (ibid., no. 166). The type is consistent also with portraits of Julia Mamaea and Orbiana, which would date from the same period as those already mentioned. However, the very sensitive feeling for the sitter's personality and the close observation to individual detail suggest that this is not an imitation of an official Imperial portrait, but rather one of a local lady of high birth from the period of Elagabalus or Alexander Severus.
R. forehead, l. cheek, and the tip of the nose are chipped. Also some breaks at the base of hair and neck.
- H. 0.38.
- Cf. İnan-Rosenbaum, Roman Byzantine Portrait Sculpture, no. 163, pp. 134-135, pl. 95 and no. 166, pl. 98:3; cf. also nos. 164, 166, 167, pls. 96 and 97. For the origin of the coil style at the back of the head, see H. Weber,Julia Paula,127 and fig. 5. For Julia Mamaea see Felletti-Maj, lconografia, 106-110, pl. VII:21-24; for Orbiana, ibid. 104, pl. VI:16-18.
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