Museo di Scultura Antica Giovanni Barracco

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Head of a bearded man
Ptolemaic period (second half of the 1rst century B.C.)
Black diorite

When Barracco bought this extraordinarily expressive portrait, he thought it was of Julius Caesar, made by Egyptian craftsmen during Caesar’s stay in their land. However, the stylistic features of the head indicate that it was actually one of a series of portraits made during Ptolemaic times (332-30 B.C.) and characterized by the presence of a small column at the back. In this portrait, the fact that the subject is wearing a diadem decorated with a star indicates that he was a priest.

Inventory: Inv MB 31

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