Lot 57: Roman Venus Statuette
December 6, 2016
London, United KingdomLive Auction
Description: 1st century BC-1st century AD. A bronze statuette of Venus (Aphrodite) standing holding her loosely draped garment at her hips; her hair elaborately dressed with ringlets to the shoulders, her left hand holding the folded hem of her clothing. Cf. Rolland, H. Bronzes Antiques de Haute Provence, Paris, 1965, item 76 for type. 305 grams, 14cm (5 1/2"). Property of a London gentleman; acquired in the 1980s. Venus was one of the most popular deities to be represented in small scale sculpture for centuries across the Mediterranean world, and one of the most common to be found in household shrines. The goddess was not only associated with love, but also with fertility in both humans and nature, and was regarded as a protector of the crops under her Etruscan name of Turan. She was also considered to be a mother goddess who protected her devotees under the name of Venus Genetrix. She was the mother of Aeneas, from whom Julius Caesar claimed descent, and was thus the progenitor of the whole Julio-Claudian dynasty.
Condition Report: Very fine condition, one hand and foot absent.