About this object

Head of Apollo recognised as the popular type known as Apollo Lykeios, a statue made by Praxiteles and described by Lucian as being in the Lykeion in Athens. The statue was popular because it represented Apollo as a youthful male, relaxed and simple in representation. The head lacks the main feature of the popular statue, the right arm resting on top of the head but has the characteristic hairstyle. The head turns to the right, his lips are parted. The most distinct feature of the head is his hairstyle with the topknot. He is young but not that effeminine compared to statues such as the Apollo the Belvedere. The head has had extensive restorations which make it diffiult to date but it is probably of the Early Imprerial Roman period. Bartman noted that despite the lack of provenance for the head it probably originated from Rome and that it is similar to the statue in the British Museum, one in the Palazzo Mattei and a torso in the Borghese. The Ince head may have belonged to the Borghese torso which belonged to the Mattei but was restored falsely with the head of Augustus.
The bust is ancient but alien to the head and wears a paludamemtum which is secured on the right shoulder with a large brooch. The intermediate piece of the the neck and the collarbone was a later restoration. Restorations are also on the nose and upper lip with the chin being added. There is breakage at the top of the head where the right arm would have been attached. There is some reworking in the area that separated the hair from the face and triangle of the hairknot above the forehead.

Object specifics

  • Type
  • Culture
    Roman Imperial
  • Artist/Maker
  • Place made
    Europe: Southern Europe: Italy: Rome
  • Date made
    1st Century AD - 2nd century AD
  • Materials
  • Location
    Item not currently on display
  • Acquisition
    Gift of Col. Joseph W Weld, 1959
  • Collector
    Henry Blundell
  • Place collected
  • Date collected
  • Measurements
    920 mm x 610 mm x 300 mm x 122 kg
  • Note
    Blundell compared it with a head of Apollo in the Capitol and described the hair as a kind of diadem. He also expressed his admiration and knowledge for the best example of Apollo the Belvedere. Curator's comments: is this the Apollo that is discussed as one of the findings from a villa in the area of Prato Bagnato an excavation undertaken by Nicola Lappicola in Clare Hornsby publication, Digging and Dealing in 18th century Italy p.126 together with Satyr and Hermaphrodite and what was believed to be Isis head but is actually Apollo 59.148.108 and referred by Neudecker Richard, Die Sculpturen Ausstattung romischer villen in Italien, p.214, no 55.5 ?
  • Related people
    Henry Blundell ( Collector, previous owner); Joseph William Weld ( Previous owner)

Explore related


  • A Catalogue of the Ancient Marbles at Ince Blundell Hall

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    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

  • Lexicon iconographicum mythologiae classicae

    Publisher: Artemis
    Date: 1981

  • The Ince Blundell collection of classical sculpture Volume III-The ideal sculpture

    Bartman, Elizabeth

    Author: Bartman, Elizabeth
    Publisher: Liverpool University Press
    Date: 2017
    Description: This book investigates the important antiquities collection formed by Henry Blundell of Ince Blundell Hall, near Liverpool, in the late eighteenth century. Consisting of more than 500 ancient marbles - the UK's largest collection of Roman sculptures after that of the British Museum - the collection was assembled primarily in Italy during Blundell's various 'Grant Tour' visits. As ancient statues were the preeminent souvenir of the Grand Tour, Blundell has strong competition from other collectors, British nobility and European aristocrats, monarchs, and the Pope. His statues represent a typical cross section of sculptures that would have decorated ancient Roman houses, villas, public spaces and even tombs, although their precise origins are largely unknown. Most are likely to have come from Rome and at least one was found at Hadrian's Villa at Tivoli.


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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