About this object

Under life-size statue of Apollo, leaning against a tripod with a snake. The god is depicted in a hipshot pose with the weight on the straight right leg. The torso is mainly the ancient piece, the ancient arms do not survive but it is very likely that the god raised his right arm and lowered the left. The left may have rested on a large object that was doweled into place at the left hip. The youth and appearance of the god suggest he is either Apollo or Dionysus. The strap across the torso may had been for a quiver or a cithara, both attributes of Apollo. He slightly leans in his pose. A missing dowel suggests that there was a musical instrument attached to the left arm as an accessory. The presence of a tripod with a snake entwined in its legs and a vessel in the right hand suggest a mysticism, relevant to the god Apollo.
There are restorations from different marble especially in the head and the neck, the arms below the shoulder, the right knee, the left lower calf, the tripod which has been executed in two parts, the basin and the stand. The strut also serves to attach the tripod to the left leg and another joins at the calves, a dowel hole below the left hip was possibly used to attach his cithara. Blundell mentioned a vessel in the right hand but today it grasps a baton. There is erosion in numerous surfaces such as the ends of the hair, the nipples, the patches of the right shoulder and quiver. The modern plinth is also in pieces.

Object specifics

  • Type
  • Culture
  • Artist/Maker
  • Place made
    Europe: Southern Europe: Italy: Rome
  • Date made
    2nd Century AD
  • Materials
  • Location
    Item currently on loan
  • Acquisition
    Gift of Col. Joseph W Weld, 1959
  • Collector
    Henry Blundell
  • Place collected
  • Date collected
  • Measurements
    1420 mm x 690 mm x 490 mm x 253.5 kg
  • Note
    Ashmole compared this statue with the torso in Mariemont where the god carried a quiver on his back. Bartman compared it with excavated examples of Apollo as the cithara player: one found in the north annex of the Gymnasium Baths in Salamis in Cyprus and another from the frigidarium of the West Baths of Chercel. Bartman dated the statue based on such examples to the 2nd century AD and proposed that this a Roman metropolitan example rather than a provincial, displayed in a public or private setting. The restorer took the inspiration from the Apollo the Belvedere especially in the hair and face. The idea of the tripod may have come from representations of Apollo on coins and sculptures such as that of Dresden depicting a relaxed Apollo of the Lykeios type.
  • Related people
    Henry Blundell ( Collector, previous owner); Joseph William Weld ( Previous owner)

Explore related


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    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 Col Sir 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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