59 x 42 x 30 cm
early 20th century
Statue of a naked hunchback. The head and the shoulders are largely proportionate, but the upper body is entirely misshapen, continuing the grotesque tradition which became popular from the Hellenistic period onwards. His features are serene, the curly hair and the beard recall the portraits of philosophers. Ancient tradition held that Aesop of Samos (ca. 624—540 BC), the famous Greek fabulist was a stunted, hunchbacked figure, which led to a now contested identification of this statue as his portrait. Aesop was mostly famed for his animal fables, which were later adapted by many, including Phaedrus, Gáspár Heltai and Jean de La Fontaine.