LL 179


Hygeia was the goddess of cleanliness and health. This sculpture, and 'Bathers' (LL 183) by the same artist, were once owned by the soap manufacturer A & F Pears. They was displayed in the entrance hall of their offices in London (71 Oxford Street) by 1900. Lever's company part-owned A & F Pears from 1914. Their subjects suggesting health and cleanliness refer to the benefits to be obtained from the soap manufacturer. Hygeia is an unusual subject in 19th-century sculpture and is not usually portrayed nude. The sculptor seems to be entirely unrecorded unless he is the Edmund Weber studying small scale sculpture at the Vienna Academy in 1855 - 1856.