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Antiquities

Sotheby's

10 AM, June 11, 2010

Sale 8644

Marble torso of Roman Emperor

Lot 57, torso of an Emperor, Roman Imperial, Julio-Claudian, 1st half of 1st Century A.D., marble, 43 5/16 inches high

By Carter B. Horsley

This June 11, 2010 auction of Antiquities at Sotheby's is small in quality but very high in quality with some very impressive Roman sculpture and some nice Egyptian works.

The most spectacular work is Lot 57, a large, Roman marble torso of an emperior from the Roman Imperiod Julio-Claudian Period in the first half of the 1st  Century A.D.  

The statue is 43 5/16 inches high and although it is missing a head, arms and legs it is an animated pose.  It is, in fact, perhaps more impressive than a naked god or goddess that might have smooth and seemingly surfaces as the torso here is clad in a highly ornate uniform with rich sculptural groupings and a marvelously rippled "skirt."

Detail of marble torso of marble emperor


Lot 57, detail of torso of an Emperor, Roman Imperial, Julio-Claudian, 1st half of 1st Century A.D., marble, 43 5/16 inches high

It is in wonderful condition and the top half of the depicted silver uniform has a radiant god flanked by four rearing horses.  The lower half has two winged gods with shields.

Detail of marble torse of Roman Emperor

Lot 57, torso of an Emperor, Roman Imperial, Julio-Claudian, 1st half of 1st Century A.D., marble, 43 5/16 inches high

The top of the "skirt" has two rows of highly decorative flaps.

Detail of marble torso of Roman Emperor

Lot 57, torso of an Emperor, Roman Imperial, Julio-Claudian, 1st half of 1st Century A.D., marble, 43 5/16 inches high

The catalogue suggests that the sculpture probably represents Augustus, Tiberius, or Claudius and is carved in two parts and is standing with the weight on his right leg.  It is "wearing a tunic, leather corselet with fringed lappets falling at the waist and shoulders, bronze cuirass, and paludamentum falling from the left shoulder over the back and formerly over the extended left forearm, the bronze brestplate decorated in relief on the chest with the god Sol emerging from the waters in a front quadriga and on the adboment with two Victories flanking a trophy and handing shield onto it, a large inverted palmette below with scrolling acanthus and rosettes on eiter side, the upper row of pteryges decorated with alternativing feline heads above lotus flowers and saddorsed rams' heads above palmettes, the lower row with alternativng gorgoneira and palmettes, a bearded head interrupting the sequence on the right hip."

The sculpture is "from one of the Twin Temples on the northeast corner of the forum of Salona in Dalmatia.  It is property from an Austrian family collection.

The lot has a conservative estimate of $800,000 to $1.200,000.  It sold for $7,362,500 including the buyer's premium as do all results mentioned in this article.

Roman marble group of three satyrs fighting a serpent

Lot 29, Three Satyrs Fighting a Serpent, Roman, marble, Roman Imperial, circa 1st Century A.D., 25 1/4 by 31 1/2 inches

Another major work in the auction from the same Austrian collection is Lot 29, "Three Satyrs Fighting a Serpent," a Roman Imperial marble circa 1st Century A.D.  It is 25 1/4 by 31 1/2 inches and and has a modest estimate of $300,000 to $500,000. According to the catalogue, it was once in the collection of Lorenzo de' Medici, il Magnifico of Florence and served as inspiration for Pollaiuolo for one of the fallen figures in his"Battle of the Nudes" engraving and also for two figures in Michelangelo's "Battle of the Centaurs" marble relief.  It sold for $3,442,500.

Roman bust of the Athena Giustiniani

Lot 18, Bust of the Athena Giustiniani, Roman, Roman Imperial, marble, circa 2nd Century A.D., 22 5/8 inches high

The classical Greek sculpture prototype known as the "Athena Giustinani" is named after its best preserved and most famous Roman version, a monumental statue of the goddess which was once the pride of the Giustinani Collection in Rome and is now in the Vatican Museums.  The Greek bronze original might have been the cult statue of Athena Sunias in the temple dedicated to her at Cape Souunion.  Lot 18 appears to be the only known bust of the Athena  Giustiniani type originally carved as a bust.  It was once in the collection of Baron Joseph van der Elst of Brussels and Biot, a collector of Old Master Paintings.  It has an estimate of $600,000 to $900,000.  It sold for $4,114,500.

Roman bronze figure of Athena

Lot 75, Athena, bronze, Roman, circa 1st-2nd Century A.D., 7 7/8 inches high, estimate $6,000 to $9,000.  It sold for $20,000

Lot 75 is a very nice Roman bronze statuette of Athena circa 1st-2nd Century A.D. It is 7 7/8 inches high and has an estimate of $6,000 to $9,000.  It sold for $20,000.

Roman Syria limestone mask of Silenus

Lot 95, Head of Silenus Emerging From a Calyx, Roman Syria, circa 2nd Century A.D., limestone, 15 inches high

Lot 95 is a charming and impressive and large limestone "Head of Silenus Emerging From a Calyx."  It is from Roman Syria,circa 2nd Century, A.D., and is 15 inches high,  It has an estimate of $12,000 to $18,000.  It sold for $21,250.

Roman rosso antico marblke head of Pan or satyr

Lot 22, head of Pan or a satyr, Roman, rosso antico marble, Roman Imperial, circa 1st Century A.D., 7 inches high

Lot 22 is a smaller but equally animated sculpture of a similar bearded man, perhaps Pan or a satur, from the Roman Imperial Period, circa 1st Century A.D.  It is made of rosso antico marble and is7 inches high.  It has an estimate of $15,000 to $20,000.  It sold for $40,624.

Roman marble head of Aphrodite


Lot 31, head of Aphrodite, Roman, marble, Roman Imperial, circa 2nd Century A.D., 6 inches high   15-25  18,750

Lot 31 is a good, small, marble head of Aphrodite, also from the Roman Imperial Period, circa 2nd Century A.D.  It is 6 inches high and has an estimate of $15,000 to $25,000.  It sold for $18,750.

Etruscan terracotta figure of Herakles

Lot 30, figure of Herakles Wearing the Nemean Lion Skin, Etruscan, terracotta, cira 2nd-1st Century B.C., 22 3/4 inches,  20- 30  $34,375

Lot 30 is a large Etruscan terracotta of "Herakles Wearing the Nemean Lion Skin."  It is 22 3/4 inches high and has an estimate of $20,000 to $30,000.  It sold for $34,375.

Roman marble panther Trapezophoros

Lot 45, Panther Trapezophoros, Roman, marble, Roman Imperial, circa 1st Century A.D. 27 3/8 inches high  

Lot 45 is a striking and quite beautiful Roman marble table leg in the form of a panther.  It is Roman Imperial, circa 1st Century A.D. and 27 3/8 inches high.  It has an estimate of $25,000 to $30,000.  It sold for $53,125.

Egyptian wood figure of a woman

Lot 5, figure of a woman, Egyptian, wood, 12th Dynasty, 1938-1759 B.C., 12 inches, estimate $7,000 to $10,000  it sold for $16,250

The auction has several nice Egyptian works.  Lot 5 is a superb wooden figure of a woman from the 12th Dynasty, 1938-1759 B.C.  It is 12 inches high and has a fine finish.  It has a conservative estimate of $7,000 to $10,000.  It sold for $16,250.

Egyptian sandstone lintel and door jamb relief

Lot 8, lintel and door jamb relief, Egyptian, sandstone, fragment form a chapel dedicated to Osiris-Ouaou, probably Karnak, 25th Dynasty, reign of Taharqa, 690-664 B.C., 17 by 38 inches

Lot 8 is a Egyptian sandstone lintel and door jamb relief fragment form a chapel dedicated to Osiris-Ouaou, probably Karnak, 25th Dynasty, reign of Taharqa, 690-664 B.C. It is 17 by 38 inches and has an estimate of $10,000 to $15,000.  It sold for $80,500.

Egyptian sandstone relief fragment of a king

Lot 6, relief fragment of a king, Egyyptian, sandstone, Ptolemaic Period, 304-30 B.C., 15 1/8 by 18 7/8 inches. estimate 15,000 to %25,000.  It sold for $25,000

Lot 6 is a good sandstone relief fragment of a king from the Ptolemaic Period, 304-30 B.C.  It is 15 1/8 by 18 7/8 inches and has an estimate of $15,000 to $25,000.  It sold for $25,000.

Egyptian granite head of a king

Lot 9, head of a king, Egyptian, granite, 30th Dynasty, 380-342 B.C., 9 3/4 inches high.  Estimate $50,000 to $80,000.  It sold for $62,500

Lot 9 is a very fine granite head of a king from the 30th Dynasty, 380-342 B.C.  It is 9 3/4 inches high.  It has a modest estimate of $50,000 to $80,000.  It sold for $62,500.

Cycladic marble figure of a goddess

Lot 14, figure of a goddess, Cycladic, marble, Early Bronze Age II, Early Spedos, circa 2600-2500 B.C., 8 3/4 inches high

Lot 14 is a Cycladic marble figure of a goddess from the Early Bronze Age II, Early Spedos, circa 2600-2500 B.C.  It is 8 3/4 inches high and was once in the collection of Mathias Komor.  It has an estimate of $180,000 to $250,000.  It sold for $446,500.

See The City Review article on the Spring 2010 Antiquities auction at Christie's

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See The City Review article on the Spring 2009 Antiquities auction at Christie's

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See The City Review article on the Fall 2008 Antiquities auction at Sotheby's

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See The City Review article on the Spring 2007 Antiquities auction at Christie's

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See The City Review Article on the Fall 2006 Antiquities auction at Sotheby's

See The City Review article on the Spring 2006 Antiquities auction at Sotheby's

See The City Review article on the Spring 2006 Antiquities auction at Christie's

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See The City Review on the Spring 2004 Antiquities morning auction at Christie's

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See The City Review article on the Fall 2003 Antiquities auction at Christie's

See The City Review article on the Fall 2003 Antiquities auction at Sotheby's

See The City Review article on the Spring 2003 Antiquities auction at Christie's

See The City Review article on the Spring 2003 Antiquities auction at Sotheby's

See The City Review article on the Fall 2002 Antiquities auction at Sotheby's

See The City Review article on the Antiquities and Antique Jewelry auctions Dec. 12-3, 2002 at Christie's

See The City Review article on the June 12, 2002 Antiquities auction at Christie's

See The City Review article on the Fall 2001 Antiquities auction at Christie's

See The City Review article on the Fall 2001 Antiquities auction at Sotheby's

See The City Review article on the Spring 2001 Antiquities auction at Christie's

See The City Review article on the Spring 2001 Antiquities auction at Sotheby's

See The City Review article on the Fall 2000 Antiquities auction at Christie's

See The City Review article on the Antiquities auction at Sotheby's Dec. 8, 2000

See The City Review article on the Dec. 6, 2000 auction of Ancient Jewelry and Seals at Christie's

See The City Review article on the Spring 2000 Antiquities auction at Sotheby's

See The City Review article on the Spring 2000 Ancient Greek Vases auction at Christie's

See The City Review article on the Spring 2000 Antiquities auction at Christie's

See The City Review article on the Fall 1999 Antiquities auction at Christie's

See The City Review article on the Antique Jewelry evening auction at Christies Dec. 8, 1999

See The City Review article on the Dec. 9, 1999 Antiquities evening auction at Sotheby's of the Christos G. Bastis Collection

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See The City Review article on the Spring 1997 Antiquities auction at Sotheby's

 

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