About this object

Portrait of a woman restored on a modern bust.
Head is about life-size and is turned to the left. The hair is striking with a high diadem-like toupee which encircles the face and covers the earlobes. The toupee is made of small snail curls with a drilled and well defined hole in the centre of each curl.The rest of the hair in the crown is combed backwards straight and together with some small loosely twisted strands of hair made into thin plaits gathered into a ring shaped bun high on the head. A small wispy curl falls down the neck behind each ear. The face has not got any particular personal features other than the hair which would make the bust a portrait. Jane Fejfer regarded the treatment of the lower face and the eyebrows as 18th century restorations.The ears are badly damaged, and the top of the hair, the lower part of neck with bust, as well as base, have been restored. The face was restored in the 18th century. Jane Fejfer claimed that evidence from Blundell's Account indicated that some of the marbles were restored at Ince Blundell.

Object specifics

  • Type
  • Culture
    Roman Imperial
  • Artist/Maker
  • Place made
    Europe: Southern Europe: Italy: Rome
  • Date made
    110 AD about
  • Materials
  • Location
    Item not currently on display
  • Acquisition
    Gift of Col. Joseph W Weld, 1959
  • Collector
    Henry Blundell
  • Place collected
  • Date collected
  • Measurements
    535 mm x 260 mm x 230 mm x 23 kg
  • Note
    Blundell considered this to be a portrait of Julius Caesar's daughter, Julia. The hairstyle of the bust led some scholars to try to associate the bust with portraits of Julia Titi, the daughter of the Roman Emperor Titus. Jane Fejfer noted that the hairstyle of Julia Titi was very different to the Ince bust: it was more of a thick sponge toupee and a relative small and low placed chignon. The Ince bust has a more stereotypical drill work, similar to allegorical figures from reliefs of the arch of Trajan at Benevento from 114 AD. Jane Fejfer characterised the ring shaped bun as typically Trajanic.
  • Related people
    Henry Blundell ( Collector, previous owner); Joseph William Weld ( Previous owner)

Explore related


  • A Catalogue of the Ancient Marbles at Ince Blundell Hall

    Ashmole, Bernard

    Author: Ashmole, Bernard
    Publisher: Clarendon Press
    Date: 1929
    Description: An illustrated catalogue of the ancient sculptures collected by Henry Blundell and formerly at Ince Blundell Hall.

  • An Account of the Statues, Busts, Bass Relieves, Cinerary Urns, and other ancient marbles, and paintings at Ince. Collected by H.B.

    Blundell, Henry

    Author: Blundell, Henry
    Date: 1803

  • Ancient Marbles in Great Britain

    Michaelis, A

    Author: Michaelis, A
    Publisher: Cambridge University Press
    Date: 1882

  • The Ince Blundell Collection of Classical Sculpture. Volume I - the Portraits. Part 1: The Female Portraits

    Fejfer, Jane; Southworth, Edmund

    Author: Fejfer, Jane; Southworth, Edmund
    Publisher: HMSO
    Date: 1991


Previous owners

  • Joseph William Weld

    Owned from: 1958
    How acquired: By descent
    Owned until: 1959
    Disposal method: Donation
  • Henry Blundell

    Owned from: Unknown or unrecorded
    How acquired: Purchased
    Owned until: 1810
    Disposal method: Bequest
Object view = Humanities
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