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Rare Roman Bronze Figurine in the Guise of Alexander the Great

Rare Roman Bronze Figurine in the Guise of Alexander the Great


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Directory: Hidden: Viewable: Pre AD 1000: Item # 1295159
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290 Fillmore St. #D
Denver, CO. 80206
303-321-7351 gallery

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 $12,875.00 
$12,875.00

This rare piece is a Roman bronze figurine that dates circa 1st-3rd century A.D. This impressive piece is approximately 2.8 inches high, and is an intact example with no repair/restoration. This piece also has an even beautiful dark blue/green patina with spotty red highlights, and is in excellent condition with no noticeable breaks or chips. This piece is seen standing with the full weight on the left leg, and the other leg is slightly bent while the body is seen slightly leaning to the right. This piece also stands by itself, and is placed on a custom stand for added stability. This piece has extremely refined facial detail, and there are other minute details seen on this piece such as the design of the sandals. The figure seen here may also depict Alexander the Great, as it displays many attributes that are known for this dynamic Greek figure from antiquity. Although this piece is a Roman bronze, the Greek features seen on this piece are unmistakable, such as the Greek muscled cuirass which is worn over the Greek knee-length "chiton", the attached cape "chlamys" which falls behind, and the pose of the figure that is seen with the weight on one leg. In addition, this figure has upswept curls above the forehead known as an "anastole" hair style, along with thick locks of leonine hair, deep set eyes, an angular jaw, and a prominent brow which are all facial features of Alexander the Great. This figure is also seen extending his right arm, and the open upturned hand likely held a missing round "phiale", which held wine that was used for sacrificial offerings to the Gods. This military figure also appears to be in the act of offering wine sacrifice to the Gods, and this type of wine sacrifice using a "phiale" was purely a Greek religious rite, rather than a Roman ritual. It's possible that this figurine reminded the owner in Roman times of Alexander's visit to Troy, as he was the new Achilles - the champion of the Greeks and, as Achilles had done 1,000 years before, he sacrificed in the temple of Athena. Wealthy and cultivated Romans would often engage the topic of Alexander's notable personality, his superhuman accomplishments, and the human fate with their philosophical discourses. It would not be surprising to find his image in the intimacy of a domestic villa. The famous Villa dei Papiri in Herculaneum contained a whole collection of several bronze busts representing Greek Hellenistic rulers, Greek poets, and philosophers, which serves as an eloquent example of the cultural preferences of the Roman elite. This figurine also appears to be grasping a Roman sword known as a "gladius", which had a rounded pummel as seen here. The Roman general Marcus Antony also favored Greek dress as seen on this figurine, and this piece may also represent a "duality of portraiture", in that it is a combination of Greek and Roman attributes, and may represent more than one famous individual and/or military leader. What is certain relative to this rare figurine, is that this figure is both a military and religious figure, and this combination is best displayed in the figurine offered here. (Another analogous example of a Roman bronze figurine in the guise of Alexander the Great, was offered by Royal Athena Galleries, New York, in "Art of the Ancient World", Vol. XXIII, 2012, no. 49. Approximately 3.75 inches high, circa 1st-3rd century A.D., and complete. $47,500.00 fixed price. See attached photo.) The piece offered here is a rare type that is seldom seen on the market. Ex: Private German collection, circa 1980's. (Note: additional documentation is available to the purchaser.) I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition: