Female head with wreath

Classification
Culture
Dimensions
height: 22.5 cm
Date
140–160 A.D.
Iconography
Inventory
4763
ID
Hyp-3936
References
Szilágyi, J. Gy., Antik Gyűjtemény, 65; Szilágyi, J. Gy., Ancient Art, 73

The head is that of a maenad (bacchant), who belonged, like Silenos and the satyrs, to the retinue of Dionysos. The maenad thrusts her head fervently to the back: she is crowned with a leafy cone wreath. The passionate gesture is intensified by the mouth open for shouting or singing, and the short, matted hair that frames the face and is composed of locks carved in short, wide notches. The statue that the head once belonged to represented the maenad in an exalted dance: her figure rendered Dionysiac ecstasy visible and made the god present.

Marble analyses conducted by Danielle Decrouez (Geneva, Museum of Natural History) and Karl Ramseyer (University of Bern, Institute of Geological Sciences) have shown that the statue was made of Luna (Carrara) marble. Click here for the detailed results.