Archaistic Statuette of Athena



Statuette of Athena, sculpted in the Archaistic style of the Palladion type which was fashionable in Rome particularly during the reign of Claudius ( 41-54 AD ). The head and body are both ancient, but from different statues and of different marble. The goddess is in a frontal position with both her feet straight and holds the atrributes common to this type: the shield and the spear. She is smaller than lifesize and has a rigid pose. She wears a Corinthian helmet with an elaborate crest and she is holding the shield on her left arm while the right arm is raised and bent holding the remnants of possibly a spear. Her peplos is heavily pleated, and its long overfold pleats end in an inverted V at the lower hem. The vertical skirt folds descend to her ankles. The aegis is very large and seems to be a protective breastplate rather than an apotropaic device. The Medusa head is also large and has her tongue stretched out and a smiling mouth. The lionskin belt along Athena's body is unusual but may derive from the Athena Albani and the Dresden Athena. The head is a mixture of ancient and modern work and the face is classical and not in line with the archaicising body. Blundell described her torso as modern and Italian. The arms and legs from the knees downwards are new and there are restorations on the tip of the nose, the chin, the helmet crest, the snaky edge of the aegis and in small patches of the drapery.