Roman, Imperial Period, ca. 1st to 3rd century CE. Finely deleated in repousse, a silver panel (98% silver) depicting the bust of a goddess - perhaps Cybele, the Mother Goddess (Magna Mater or Great Mother) of Rome - wearing a mural crown featuring a colonnade as well as a crescent moon to one side. The goddess wears a chiton with billowing folds of drapery cascading over her body, a necklace with dangling amulets, and bracelets on both wrists of her upraised hands. The decorative border may represent elements of a classical naiskos. Size: 5.5" L x 4.875" W (14 cm x 12.4 cm); Silver quality: 98%.
Eutychides of Sicyon (ca. 335- ca. 275), a student of the legendary sculptor Lysippos, introduced the mural crown in Greek art with works such as his statue of the Tyche of Antioch. This work inspired other sculptors of statues of protective city deities. The crown is visible on virtually every statue of Cybele as well as some statues of Artemis of Ephesus.
Provenance: private East Coast, USA collection; ex-Madame Frances Artuner collection, Belgium, acquired in the 1960s
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