Superbly carved Greek head of a young girl showing almond-shaped eyes and marked eyelids.
Tiny holes are drilled on the edges of the eyes and of the pursed mouth.
The child-like character is given by the receding forehead; nose and mouth protrude a bit, the fleshy ears are small.
The melon hairdo is typical for the late 4th century BC and also found on Tanagra figurines.
Young girls appear sometimes related to the initiation rites of the Artemis cult at Brauron. The rite known as Brauronia took place every five years and was called arkteia (from arkteuein - to behave like a bear). The girls were clad in saffron yellow clothes and danced in front of the altar. The clothes may have represented the fur of the bear and the girls imitated little she-bears, called arktoi. Archaeological evidence has confirmed that the girls lived in a kind of monastical community until their marriageability.
Coarse-grained Greek marble
H. 4.4 cm (1.7 in)
H. with stand 7.2 cm (2.8 in)
Greek, late 4th early 3rd century BC
Bun at rear missing, nose and lower lip slightly chipped.
Private collection A.M., Geneva (Switzerland), since 1990.
Thence art market Switzerland
The authenticity of the object is unconditionally guaranteed