A Roman marble head of Menander
Lot 134*
A Roman marble portrait head of Menander
Sold for £72,000 (US$ 121,019) inc. premium
Auction Details
Lot Details
A Roman marble portrait head of Menander
Circa 1st Century A.D.
The Athenian playwright depicted turning to the right, his face naturalistically carved with deep-set heavily-lidded eyes beneath an imposing browline, his waving hair swept to the side and falling over his furrowed brow, 10½in (26.7cm) high, mounted


  • Provenance:
    Ex Swiss private collection.

    Menander (circa 344-391 B.C.) was the leading playwright of 'New Comedy', which satirised everyday situations and Athenian social convention. His plays enjoyed a resurgence in popularity in Imperial Rome, particularly influencing the playwrights Plautus and Terence.

    This example is a Roman copy after the original Greek bronze herm by Kephisodotos and Timarchos, the sons of Praxiteles, which according to Pausanias was set up after Menander's death in the Theatre of Dionysos at Athens in the early 3rd Century B.C. Cf. G.M.A. Richter, Portraits of the Greeks, (London 1965), vol. II, figs.1621-1623; 1573-1576.
Lot symbols