A pair of Roman Imperial portrait heads from the Severan Dynasty - the emperor Elagabalus and his mother Julia Soaemias. The emperor Elagabalus, who ruled AD 218 - 222, is depicted with youthful features with a pensive expression, wearing a short mustache and beard, his hair is closely cropped. H: 8 1/4 in (21 cm), with light surface deposits but retains the character of this notorious emperor who was born in Emesa, Syria and was high priest of the cult of the god Heliogabal. His mother, Julia Soaemias, (AD 180 - 222), is modeled in veristic style showing her age, her hair beautifully styled back into waves and pulled up in a woven plait at the back of her head. Resembling the portraits on her coins, the head is a rare depiction of this short-lived empress in marble. H: 9 3/8 in (23.8 cm). Great detail and style with deposits within the recesses. Mounted on a lovely banded marble base. A rare opportunity to obtain portraits of this Roman Imperial mother and son; Soaemias especially rarely encountered in portrait sculpture. Ex Southern California private collection.
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