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Museum of Classical Archaeology Databases

Athena Giustiniani, Head

This head shows the goddess Athena as a warrior, with a helmet perched on her head. Her helmet is decorated with rams’ heads. It is a Roman version of a sculpture which dates to the late fifth from early fourth century BCE.

This sculptural type takes its name from a full-length statue which was discovered on the Esquiline in Rome at the start of the seventeenth century and then displayed in the collection of Vincenzo Giustiniani. This was believed to be not just a work of art but a holy cult object. It was said that in the mid eighteenth century Roman boys kissed her hand before going to school, a tradition supposedly continued in the next century by British tourists

Number: 
168
Material: 
Marble
Location of Original: 

Berlin K180

Size: 
0.51m
References: 

Lippold: Griechische Plastik, 212 (n.15)
Blümel: Römische Kopien Griechische Skulpturen des V Jahrhunderts (1931), 41-
cf. Archäologischer Anzeiger XLIX (1934), 255, fig.1; 259-. Copy in Athens (NM Magazine Inventory 3004)
cf. Haskell & Penny: Taste and the Antique (1981), 269

Date: 
Second century CE. Original: late fifth century BCE
Provenance: 

Acquired in Rome in 1875 from Pasinati

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