Ancient Harpocrates Figurine, Roman Empire, Alexandria (1844BHK) $395

$395.00

Ht: 6.5”  W: 2.625”  D: 1.75” | FREE SHIPPING!

This figure is Harpocrates the Greek god of silence, confidentiality and secrets holding a jar and was made using a bivalve-mould. The iconography hints at a royal and temple cult, as he wears a double crown symbolizing both Upper and Lower Egypt. A royal emblem showing an association with the contemporary king, in Egypt royals with crowns were a manifestation of the Egyptian god Horus. Small white specks are all that remains of the slip and colorful paints covering it. Missing part of his right side when excavated, there are no repairs and it is mounted on a stand. Given its age, the image is in good condition with normal scrapes and cracks found in pieces of this age.

 

Description

In Alexandria, Egyptian archaeological excavations uncovered Graeco-Roman earthenware terracotta pieces made using a bivalve mold that provided insights into their use. Throughout the vast Roman-Empire, artisans created varying local styles of ancient pottery figurines, but most were of comparable religious themes of gods and goddesses and their attributes. Ancestral objects to satisfy devotees’ wishes for home deities for prayer and to provide favor, these are made votive images placed on a home altar or shrine with protective charms to ward off evil in addition to the offerings to the gods brought to temples and sanctuaries. (Muratov) Usually hollow and made using a bivalve mold, the haves were combined after firing, covered with a slip and painted with bright colors. Paints applied after firing, however, rarely survive burial unless in small and faded patches. Likely excavated from an underground site, this is in good condition considering its vast age and pairs well with our ancient Greco-Roman Kourotrophos fertility and child-protector figurine.

Sources

Maya B. Muratov, Timeline of Art History, Greek Terracotta Figurines with Articulated Limbs, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, metmuseum.org

Additional information

Weight 5 lbs
Dimensions 8 × 8 × 8 in
Place of Origin

Ancient Mediterranean

Period

Ancient, Roman Empire

Date

1st Century B.C.E.

Materials and Technique

Terracotta

Dimensions (inches)

Ht: 6.5” W: 2.625” D: 1.75”

Dimensions (metric)

Ht: 16.51cm W: 6.67cm D: 4.45cm

Condition

Good condition, see description

Reference Number

1844BHK

Weight

7.8oz