Rome, Imperial Period, 1st to 4th century CE. This is a bronze herm of a man with hair swept upward and a loop (now broken) on his head; his only other decoration is his genitals. The bottom of the herm has some small projections. Herm or herma are sculptures with a head, sometimes a torso, and male genitals carved at the appropriate height. They are thought to derive from the ancient Greek practice of worshipping divinities that were in the form of cairns or columns of stone or wood. These later evolved into adding a head and phallus to the column. Many herma are of Hermes himself, but others -- both gods and real figures like Socrates and Plato -- are known. Statues like this one were apotropaic and kept in many places -- at crossroads, in temples, in public places, and in homes. This figure would have been protective for its owner. Size: 0.55" W x 2.7" H (1.4 cm x 6.9 cm)
Provenance: Ex - Prominent LA County collector who acquired these prior to 2000
All items legal to buy/sell under U.S. Statute covering cultural patrimony Code 2600, CHAPTER 14, and are guaranteed to be as described or your money back.
A Certificate of Authenticity will accompany all winning bids.
We ship worldwide and handle all shipping in-house for your convenience.