skip to content

Museum of Classical Archaeology Databases

Hermes and the Infant Dionysos

Also called the Hermes of Olympia or the Hermes of Praxiteles.

Scholarship is divided over whether this is a Greek original by famed sculptor, Praxiteles, a Roman copy of his statue, or the work of a lesser-known sculptor of the same name. If it is a Greek original, its survival is unique.

The right arm of Hermes is lost, but it is likely that he held a bunch of grapes which he wistfully dangled in front of the baby Dionysos, god of wine and intoxication. Interestingly only one ancient writer, Pausanias, considered the Hermes of Praxiteles worthy of mention

Parian marble
Location of Original: 

Olympia Museum


The head (?) purchased 23 March 1879 by Henry Sidgwick; donated by him on 29 May 1880 to the Fitzwilliam Museum; transferred to the Museum in 1884. The rest (?) purchased in 1884, from Brucciani


Lippold: Griechische Plastik, 241 (n.6), pl. 84.2
Grose: 41, no.328
Walston: Catalogue of Casts in the Museum of Classical Archaeology (1889), 77, no.364
Blümel: Hermes eines Praxiteles
Dinsmoor: American Journal of Archaeology XLV (1941), 349-
Kunze & Weber: American Journal of Archaeology LII (1948), 490-
Rhys Carpenter: American Journal of Archaeology XXXV (1931), 249-
Casson: American Journal of Archaeology XXXV, 262-
Cuttle: Antiquity VIII (1934), 151-

Mid C4 BCE (if original)
Praxiteles (if original)

Found in the Heraeum at Olympia in May 1877

Search Casts

Use our search tools to search the Casts Archive

Museum of Classical Archaeology, Cambridge

Every cast tells two stories.
One ancient. One modern.

Admission is free.

We are open

Opening hours

Tues-Fri: 10am-5pm
Sat: 10am-1pm (Univ. term-time only)
Sun & Mon: Closed

Closed on Bank Holiday Mondays

Visit us

Museum of Classical Archaeology
Faculty of Classics
Sidgwick Avenue

Get in touch

Tel. +44 (0)1223 330402

Facebook Twitter

For an explanation of what personal information we gather when you visit the University’s website and details of how that information is used please see the following University Privacy policy:

Copyright statement

All images and material on our websites are ©Museum of Classical Archaeology, University of Cambridge unless otherwise stated. Permission is required to reproduce our images.

See also our Copyright Notice and Take Down Policy.

Important Information

Museum of Classical Archaeology Web Accessibility Statement