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Head of a Man with a Rosette Diadem

Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art

On View: 19th Dynasty to Roman Period, Martha A. and Robert S. Rubin Gallery, 3rd Floor

The somewhat broad and imprecise carving of this idealizing head may represent a provincial style of the region of Dendera. It may also be a harbinger of the dramatic decline in private statuary that occurred by the late first century B.C. A rosette is symbolic of light and regeneration, and a rosette diadem sometimes symbolizes posthumous deification. However, here the diadem may be the insignia of a provincial governorship or a priesthood.

MEDIUM Basalt
  • Possible Place Made: Dendera, Egypt
  • DATES 30 B.C.E.-14 C.E.
    PERIOD Roman Period
    DIMENSIONS Height: 15 7/16 in. (39.2 cm)
    ACCESSION NUMBER 55.120
    CREDIT LINE Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund
    CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Over life-size black basalt head of a man originally with inlaid eyes. Idealized face in archaizing style. Head encircled with diadem of rosettes (? crown of justification). Upper area of hair only roughly indicated; hair beneath diadem in from of conventionalized curls. Dull surface. Certainly from a temple statue. Condition: Eyes list, nose broken. A few rosettes lost form rear of diadem.
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